Day 11 - Christmas Season Devotionals

January 5

Luke 10:1-12

"On the 11th day of Christmas my true love gave to me...Eleven Pipers Piping."

The eleventh day of Christmas is a time to reflect upon Jesus’ eleven faithful disciples: Simon Peter, Andrew, James, John, Philip, Bartholomew (also known as Nathanael), Matthew, Thomas, James son of Alphaeus, Simon the Zealot, Judas the son of James. (Luke 6:14-16). The list does not include the twelfth disciple, Judas Iscariot who betrayed Jesus to the religious leaders and the Romans.

What is incredible to remember about these faithful disciples was not only the opportunity they had to be with Jesus for three years but the privilege they had to be the first communicators of His story. They “piped” his story to the known world often at the expense of their own lives. But, no matter the risk they played on, and they taught others to play the song of Jesus. The image of eleven pipers piping is an active image. I am reminded of men like Saint Patrick who “piped” and shared his faith and changed not only Ireland but impacted all of Christianity. Men like D. L. Moody, Billy Graham, John Wesley; women like Sojourner Truth, Phoebe Palmer, and Florence Nightingale, all in their own way “piped” the story of “peace on earth, good will to all.”

We are indebted to the pipers who have gone on before, but it is imperative that we remain as equally committed to the pipers that follow us. As we play the song may we be ever aware of those coming behind us who need to learn the song. May they look back on our lives with gratitude because we taught them the greatest song of all.

The Twelfth Night
This last night before Epiphany is called “Twelfth Night.” In some traditions it was a time for feasting and the giving of presents. It was a traditional time for the removal of Christmas decorations. Some traditions included a King's Cake, as a reminder of the visit of the Magi. A special cake was baked with a bean, or a coin or almond, hidden in it. The guests would each get a piece and the one with the bean became the “king of the bean”. That person would then rule over the festivities for the evening. Customs of gift giving, an imitation of the wise men, were also part of this night. Generally, the gifts were distributed by men dressed as the three kings.

Action Point: What are you doing to honor those who have played the song, and what are you doing to help teach the song to those who follow?