An Inconvenient Adventure

By Marcy Barthelette

Ever been on an incredible spontaneous adventure? Have you been offered an opportunity that was so off-the-wall crazy, so seemingly inconvenient, so totally impractical that you just said “No”?

An adventure is only an inconvenience rightly considered. An inconvenience is only an

adventure wrongly considered. GK Chesterton

Imagine you live in the ancient lands of the middle and far east, you have spent your life studying astronomy, you enjoy great knowledge of the heavenly bodies and suddenly, a new star appears, one brighter than any you have ever seen. How will you respond? Will you gather with others of like mind to discuss its possibilities, will you keep this news all to yourself or will you pack a few belongings and climb on your camel to go in search of its source?

So, what made the Magi or Wise Men drop everything and commit to following a star wherever it might lead them. We don’t know how many there really were, but we easily buy into the assumption that three gifts meant three men. We’ve given them names; Melchior, perhaps from Persia, Gaspar, assumed from India,  and Balthazar possibly from Arabia. We depict them arriving at the stable where the Infant Jesus lay in the manger, but we know that in reality, they saw Him much later. In keeping with their religious studies, they had heard prophecies of a new King who would lead the nation of Israel as well as all those who would follow Him, and then they were offered a star to guide them to where He was.

These men, however many there were, could have stayed in the comfort of their homes and ignored the inconvenience of an adventure. They didn’t have to spend months crossing the barren desert and dealing with the perils of traveling in foreign lands. They could have enjoyed hot bread and the fruits of their homelands, but they chose common trail food and water shortages. They endured scorching hot days and cold nighttime temperatures. Perhaps it was a dedication to their profession or curiosity about this change in the heavens, perhaps it was a pull toward the promise of a special treasure. Whatever motivated them, they answered the inconvenient interruption to their everyday life by accepting the challenge of a spontaneous adventure.

When they saw the star, they were filled with joy. They entered the house and saw the child with Mary

his mother. Falling to their knees, they honored him. Then they opened their treasure chests

and presented him with gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh. Matthew 2:10-11 CEB

And what if you were a child of today and a friend came to you with a treasure map. As you study it together and curiosity overcomes you, will you go with your friend on an adventurous journey in search of precious treasure or will you decline the invitation and stay inside to play a game. I would suggest that most children would jump at the chance to embark on a journey in search of buried treasure. But the adult in us would likely not be too anxious to trudge across the desert with an ill-tempered camel and only a star to guide the way.

But Jesus called the children to him and said, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these. Truly I tell you, anyone who will not receive the kingdom of God like a little child will never enter it.
Luke 18: 16–18 (NIV)

The Magi jumped at the chance for adventure with the intense faith and hope that we see in children. Jesus invites us to join Him on the daily adventure of life and no one would argue that this past year has definitely presented challenges. So, what do we choose? Do we take the easy way and just exist in fear or do we step out with Him? Do we linger in 2020 or do we move on to 2021, a fresh perspective, a clean slate? Do we drown ourselves in the inconveniences or do we transform them into precious adventures?

I wonder in what ways the inconveniences you face today might be experienced through the eyes

of a child? How can you enter into the adventure of your day? GK Chesterton


Happy New Year to all God’s People

And remember the Magi on January 6, Epiphany, the day we celebrate their journey to see Jesus.

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