And we who know death, who live with death, who are always “in death” (as the Prayer Book reminds us)—we need the kind of strange king who won’t ignore death (always blandly basking in the cries of “Long live the king!”), who won’t hold himself aloof from it, who won’t always win and keep himself free from our terrible losses. We need a king who will, bizarrely, show us his kingship in and through our dying and death. We need a king whose gold and glitter has the whiff of myrrh about it. We don’t need a Luke Skywalker, who always seems to be soaring to heights we can’t reach. We need the strange king of Epiphany, the king who flees to Egypt with us and for us, who lives under the shadow of Herod alongside us, who goes down to the grave with us and on our behalf.
And the promise of Epiphany is that that is exactly the king we have.