Many years ago railroad crossings were marked with a sign that said, “Stop, Look and Listen”. The purpose of that sign was safety. It was intended to prevent motorists from driving into the path of a rapidly moving train.

Today is the feast of the Epiphany and the first Sunday of 2016. So I would like to borrow that slogan of the railroad crossing not so much to emphasize safety as perspective. What better time to pause and take a look at our life, before we move ahead into 2016.

Many of us are immersed in the things of earth that we seldom if ever see or sense the wonder of life. So we need to stop what we are doing and look at the stars in the sky, or the “stars” in the eyes of a child, and see once again the glory of God’s love.

It is a needless and pitiful tragedy for us to find all of life in the catalogue of common things. How sad for anyone to go year after year and never sense the wonder of a universe filled with marvelous mysteries. As we know the stars shine every night and we somehow get used to them that somehow the magic gets lost. The Wise Men of the Epiphany took the time and made the effort to renew their sense of wonder about life. Wise men and women of all generations do the same. So it seems sensible for us on this feat of the Epiphany 2016 to renew our sense of wonder.

Deep in the hearts of those Wise Men, as their camel caravan made its way home, was a fresh awareness of the nearness of God and of God’s love. Appearances to the contrary, Herod really wasn’t in charge after all. God had not forgotten the world nor has He forgotten any of us. He had come to live in it. They had seen the incarnation. And God is still with us today. Let us stop and think about that.

It is simply impossible to calculate the difference that Jesus has made in human hearts and hopes and history. The power behind all life is not an unfeeling force, but a God who really cares, knows each of us by name, and walks with us on the road of life. The reality of that has done more to put hope and courage into people than any other concept the human mind has ever held. We can’t imagine a world without God.

We still have our Caesars and our little Herod’s today. Tyranny and corruption are not dead in our world or in ourselves. But things can never again be the same because of Jesus. There is a renewed faith and a new standard of values. Today more than ever we need to remember that and we need the stability and confidence of that truth.

No doubt we need to make some changes in our lives, some mid-course corrections. The Wise Men made some changes in theirs: “they went back to their own country by another route”.

Let’s stop and look at the road we are travelling. Where will it take us? Is that the place we really want to go? It is not enough to have a good goal in mind. We must also choose the road that will lead to that goal.

What do you want to do with your lives in 2016? Where do you want to go this year? Your intentions are probably good. But let’s be sure you are travelling the road that will take you there. Happy

New Year 2016!!!