A Transforming Christmas
By: Bishop Arthur F. Mosley
For many, Christmas 2020 is much like the year has been. That is, this Christmas is really challenging. Since March of this year, many have been longing for positive chance. This cry for change is due to a number of reasons, including job loss, trouble paying bills, and trying to maintain the basic needs in life. Hence, many are not able to focus on light, gifts, trees, and decorations this Christmas. There is a cry for things to change from bad to good and from defeat to victory. We want transformation. However, the greatest transformation we are able to have is the spiritual transformation. The actions of the Wise-men/Magi in Matthew 2 are actions we are able to take. These actions will transform us and transform our Christmas.
Clearly, transformation happens. For example, a caterpillar goes inside of a cocoon and comes out a butterfly. That’s transformation. As we see in the following passage, spiritual transformation is real.
2 And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God. 
Here the Greek word for transformed is metamorphoo. The English word metamorphosis comes from this word. The Greek word means an outward change that expresses manifested change in nature or essence. It is both outer and inner change. Here, we do not cause the change but we allow the change to happen. I like to think of it this way – we position ourselves to be changed or transformed. So, what do we learn from the wise-men, who are closely associated with Christmas, about being positioned for transformation?
The first thing the wise-men do that position them for transformation is they seek the true King. Their seeking is found in Matthew 2:1-2. It says:
1 Now when Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judaea
in the days of Herod the king, behold, there came wise
men from the east to Jerusalem, 2 Saying, Where is he
that is born King of the Jews? for we have seen his star
in the east, and are come to worship him.
Notice, in verse one, it says they came. They are in this process of searching for the one born the king of the Jews, not appointed by the Roman government. The seeking has caused them to arrive. However, they have been seeking and knowing that their arrival is going to impact them in a positive and beneficial way. Whenever we seek the Lord Jesus, it is for our good! So, the first thing that brings transformation is their seeking the Lord. Are you seeking the Lord Jesus during this Christmas season? You are the only one who is able to answer that question. However, seeking Him does bring beneficial change in our lives, inner change.
The second thing the wise-men do that position them for transformation is they trust God’s Word, as we see in Matthew 2:4-6. It says:
4 And when he (Herod) had gathered all the chief
priests and scribes of the people together, he
demanded of them where Christ should be born.
5 And they said unto him, In Bethlehem of Judaea:
for thus it is written by the prophet, 6 And thou
Bethlehem, in the land of Juda, art not the least
among the princes of Juda: for out of thee shall
come a Governor, that shall rule my people Israel.
Notice, in verse five, it says, “. . .written by the prophet. . .”. This is a reference to the Holy Scriptures, God’s Word. Herod shared with the wise men what he had received based on the Word. Wise men acted on the Word because they trusted the Word, not Herod’s word, but God’s Word. Do you trust the Word of God? Do you spend time in God’s Word? His Word is powerful! His Word provides directions for living. The directions and instructions of the Word brought the wise-men into the presence of the Lord. Think about that; the Word brought them into His presence. I encourage you to spend time in God’s Word daily. Notice the effectiveness, usefulness, and transforming power of God’s Word in 2 Timothy 3:16. It reads:
16 All scripture is given by inspiration of
God, and is profitable for doctrine, for
reproof, for correction, for instruction
The third thing the wise-men do that position them for transformation is they worshipped, as we see in Matthew 2:10-11. It says:
10 When they saw the star, they rejoiced with
exceeding great joy. 11 And when they were
come into the house, they saw the young
child with Mary his mother, and fell down,
and worshipped him: and when they had
opened their treasures, they presented unto
him gifts; gold, and frankincense, and myrrh.
Their goal was to find the King and that they may worship Him! Once they are in His presence, they worship Him. To worship is to reverence, adore, and praise the Lord both publicly and privately. It is the celebration of the worthiness of God. Worship is both our invitation for His presence and a response to His presence. Worship that is sensitive and longing for His presence transforms us. We become less dominated by the flesh nature and more dominated by the Spirit, His presence. Do you take time just to be with Him and to enjoy His presence? Do you take the time to speak to Him, telling Him what you know to be true about Him? Do you have a passion to celebrate who He is? Notice what Job did in Job 1:21 when things got really difficult for him:
20 Then Job arose, and rent his mantle,
and shaved his head, and fell down upon
the ground, and worshipped,
So, the wise-men sought the Lord, trusted God’s Word, and worshipped. Where is their transformation? Well, I see their transformation in Matthew 2:12.
12 And being warned of God in a dream that
they should not return to Herod, they departed
into their own country another way. 
Their transformation is they went back another way. I like to think of their going back another way to include their being changed. I strongly believe that when we seek the Lord, follow His word, and worship Him, we too are changed, transformed.
This Christmas may not have the gifts, decorations, and large gatherings. However, this Christmas can be the one where we experience real spiritual transformation. I encourage you to seek the Lord in prayer, spend time in His word, and by all means worship Him. I assure you it will transform you and me for the better.