Summary: We do not seek Jesus on our own, instead we seek Him because He seeks us.
Wise Men & Shepherds
We know the story of the three magi or wise men well. We have heard it time and again, about how they saw the star in the East that told them that the King of the Jews had been born. The traveled far to find this king and they wished to honor Him. What is interesting is that the Greek word here is proskunh/sai, which is usually reserved for reverence given to spiritual beings such as gods.
We also know the story of the shepherds as they lay watching their sheep at night, they also came into Bethlehem to see the new born baby.
Season of Seeking
Truly the Advent Season is a season of seeking the wise men and shepherds sought to find the child born in a manger, they sought him so that they might worship, and adore him. They sought him so that they might pay him honor.
We all Seek Jesus
But wise men and shepherds are not the only one’s who seek Jesus. In fact all the world is seeking the child in the manger, they may never say that they are looking for Jesus but they are seeking; seeking to fill an emptiness inside their hearts, seeking to find that which is missing.
The problem is that too many times people misunderstand what they are actually doing, and so the things that they do seem oddly out of place for one who is seeking the Son of God.
There are those who think that worldly success will fill that void, and calm the ache in their lives, so they spend hours after hours pushing their way to the top, secretly hoping that with each step up they will find the peace and the completion that they desire, but with each step comes another wave of despair with the realization that what they seek is not there, and so they look up to the next level only to repeat the cycle.
Others believe that their wholeness for their lives comes in the acquiring of possessions, so their lives are spent amassing fortunes that they buy beautiful homes, and luxurious cars, and all of the things that any one person could ever desire. Only to find that with each purchase, the ache is still there, and that with every new thing comes a deeper sense of grief in secretly knowing that that last happiness must truly come with the next purchase, or the next million.
Norman Rockefeller, oil tycoon-billionaire, was once asked how much money would it take to make him truly happy, his response, “A little more than I have right now.” One of the richest men who ever walked the planet did not find happiness in all the money that he had earned for himself, and so he sought just a little more in the hopes that then he would find happiness.
Still others, seeking joy and peace for their lives, have all but given up on that search, time and time again they have only found pain and hurt in their lives, and in response they have retreated to the dark places of life, some have sought only to numb the pain with drugs or alcohol, hoping that they will not feel the pain or that they could forget what they were searching for. Others look to the arms of another, hoping then the hurting might be stopped, only to find more dejection, from there they move to another and another. Finding only emptiness at each stop.
There are many ways the we seek the peace that we know is out there, but many of those ways lead only to more hurt, more pain, and more heartache and misery. Yet we search still, hoping that with each attempt we will find what we seek.
There is hope
But there is hope, there is indeed a reason to be seeking, and searching for that peace, that completion, and the love that you desire, but know this, we will never find it by using our own understanding, we won’t find it by searching the things of man.
A return to the Wise-men and Shepherds
Let’s return to the story of the wise-men and shepherds, and even to that of Herod for a minute. They each were seeking, the child Jesus for their own reasons whether it be for good or bad they were looking for the baby in the manger, but they did not start their journey on their own accord, they did not begin their quest because one day they had an idea that salvation would come in the form of a child in a barn. Instead, God was calling out to each of them, the wise-men through a star in the sky, the shepherds through the Angel of the Lord, those who found the manger found it not because they sought salvation but because salvation sought them. They did not seek the child Jesus on their own instead the God was seeking and calling them.