|Sunday Gospel - Matthew 2:13-15,19-23|
After the wise men had left, the angel of the Lord appeared to Joseph in a dream and said, ‘Get up, take the child and his mother with you, and escape into Egypt, and stay there until I tell you, because Herod intends to search for the child and do away with him.’ So Joseph got up and, taking the child and his mother with him, left that night for Egypt, where he stayed until Herod was dead. This was to fulfil what the Lord had spoken through the prophet:
I called my son out of Egypt.
After Herod’s death, the angel of the Lord appeared in a dream to Joseph in Egypt and said, ‘Get up, take the child and his mother with you and go back to the land of Israel, for those who wanted to kill the child are dead.’ So Joseph got up and, taking the child and his mother with him, went back to the land of Israel. But when he learnt that Archelaus had succeeded his father Herod as ruler of Judaea he was afraid to go there, and being warned in a dream he left for the region of Galilee. There he settled in a town called Nazareth. In this way the words spoken through the prophets were to be fulfilled:
‘He will be called a Nazarene.’
In the days after a birth - a new reality begins to emerge. The realisation that even if you have planned with military precision how this child will fit into your life - you have already been thwarted. Life changes life - Love changes it more.
Love has no desire to live in isolation.Love's desire is you. Love holds your hand if you invite Her or stands watchful in the shadows if you don't. Love is Love.
The Octave of Christmas teaches us so much about Love - the humility of God's Love; the courage of Mary and Joseph's; the persistence of the Shepherds and the conviction of the Magi.
On his day Stephen taught us that Love is for others; on his, John told us that there is nothing else.
Yesterday and today we learn that Love is feared by Power and that, in fear, Power will try to defeat it.
Many years from now Jesus will stand in chains in front of Pontius Pilate and tell him that he has no Power over him.
And for that Jesus will die
But Love will live.