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THE EXAMPLE OF HEROD

 They went home another way, because God warned them

 in a dream not to return to Herod.

Matthew 2: 12b


BE WARNED! Fear of losing our positions of status (if we have any, that is), resentment of up and coming juniors at work or any organisation, including the churches, jealousy of the adoration or the esteem in which someone else is held, selfish ambition and a total disregard of God’s will in our own and in the lives of others can lead to tragedy!


    Herod was king and he intended staying that way and the throne being passed to his children. He was afraid that this baby whoever he was would take the throne from his family for his own. He wanted centre stage for himself and nobody was going to take his place if he could help it what ever it took to keep it that way. He cared nothing or at least he didn’t appear to care that this baby might be God’s Messiah. Did he think he could out wit God?


   All this turmoil within him made him lie, seek to deceive and to contemplate murder and that didn’t matter if it was children that had to be killed.


   This man shows us what can happen when evil ambition takes us over completely. When what we do is self- centre it can lead to disaster for us in our relationship to God and for those around us. Our ambition can destroy other people. We all know people of whom we say, “They don’t care whoever it is that they walk over to get what they want”.


    If we recognise any of these characteristics in ourselves then we need to do something about it now!


   As we approach Christmas and as we think about the Magi and the gifts they gave to Jesus let us think about gifts God wants us to have that will not only help us, but those with whom we live and work in the places in which we worship.

        With Herod in mind, I would like to ask for:


    The help of God to enable me to do the work to which He has called me where I am and with simplicity and humility, diligence and cheerfulness, to listen to and to share with others, to be kept from envy at the good of others and to never be jealous of them, to be happy at the success of others even when I fail, to be pleased with good things others experience when I may be having a bad time and to let the light of Christ flood my whole being with Love so that I will become less and less like myself and more and more like Him.


          How about you?

                                                                                                 AMEN.