1st Commander Balthasar, Eastern Mimas, Moon of Saturn
Balthasar never tired of watching the stars, he supposed that was what made him perfectly suited for being in command of his region’s Star Patrol. The lights that seemed to part the darkness, rooted in some celestial soil that God had planted before the universe came to spark. Rooted, and yet breathing, moving daily in the sky, revealing new signs and paths and symbols to read. But lately Balthasar hadn’t had much time for star gazing, there was so much paperwork to be done, and an endless list of evaluations that needed to be made before the end of the year. He loved his job, but sometimes he wished that it afforded him some time to be a little less rooted, to breathe freely as the stars did, time to remember what his purpose was here.
Sir Melchior III, Emperor of Jupiter & Outer Border
Melchior had never aspired to leadership, yet the sudden death of his father and older brother in the Universal War meant there wasn’t a choice in this matter. Either God or fate had decided Melchior would be emperor. Despite a royal family tree that stretched back just short of King David, in all honesty, he never felt worthy. Which is why he had called upon his friend and ally Doctor Gaspar to bring him along on his next space excursion wherever it went. Yes, he anticipated an opportunity to escape the landscape which reminded him of the grief bubbling up inside that he tried desperately to ignore, but he also wanted to prove he was worthy of whatever calling he would serve on his planet.
Doctor Gaspar, Lead Astronomer Inner Planets
Astronomer comes from the Greek words “astron” meaning stars, and “nomos” meaning law. Gaspar felt sometimes the entire universe was in tension between the two, between the wonder of flight and the pull of gravity, and it was somehow his job to wade between the tension. He didn’t believe that Creator Good, or “God” as some called him, was the source of the laws or the stars. In fact for Gaspar it was hard to believe in anything he couldn’t measure, and that which he could measure held more than enough questions for him to add extra variables. Still, there were times when the laws of science didn’t quite add up, and momentarily Gaspar would doubt himself, and wonder if there might be something more, a greater law that he had yet not been able to detect.
As he checked his star calculations for the fifteenth time that hour, he wondered about that unseen force again. Here he had been mapping the stars for his whole career, with the benefit of having star charts and records from at least the last millennium, and right over an inconsequential corner of Earth was shining what looked to be a new star. A star, yet uncharted in any of the records yet to date. He remembered Sir Melchior’s request to go with on his next trip, and sent an insta-ping to his friend. “MISSION: STAR CENSUS, DESTINATION: EARTH” For a trip like this across the galaxy, with the prospects of meeting with the still unsophisticated humans of Earth they’d need military guard. That was for sure, and with the emperor on the trip, they’d need the very best. He hadn’t worked with the commander before, but Gaspar knew Balthasar was one of the best Star Patrol agents in the galaxy. After receiving a confirmation ping from Melchior he sent a ping to Gaspar to get him on board “BY ORDER OF EMPEROR, MISSION: STAR CENSUS, DESTINATION: EARTH”.
Before the trip began Doctor Gaspar warned Commander Balthasar and Emperor Melchior, who had never been to Earth themselves, that a trip like this might be a shock to the system.
“They have strange customs and know little of the universe outside their planet. I’m still not sure what we’ll find there, but this star is worth investigating.”
There was a restless energy between the group, like a question hung in the air waiting for an answer. The star had awakened in each of them a sliver of hope.
Balthasar hoped for a real sense of freedom, beyond the bounds of his constant and demanding work, he hoped that the joy he once experienced gazing up at the sky was something still possible.
Melchior hoped desperately to have peace from the grief he felt from the loss of his family members, but also he wanted to know his purpose. Was he really meant to be emperor, was he worthy?
Gaspar wanted to know the source of the light, but more than that, he held on to a glimmer of hope that there was something more in the world than just the measurable laws of science and nature. He was scared of what that force might be, and yet he longed for it to be real.
The three arrived restless at the palace of an Earthen King, Herod. At the meeting nothing went according to plan, Herod seemed to have no information of the star, and they had a bad feeling about his intentions for the source of the light. The three continued on their journey.
When they found the source of the light the men were confused - a baby? How could this be what they had crossed space to see.
Then the baby’s mother began to sing, and her words rang true in the hearts of the wisemen.
“My soul magnifies the Lord, and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior, for he has looked on the humble estate of his servant. For behold, from now all generations will call be blessed”
She worshiped the baby as one would worship the Creator Good, and yet here he lay as a humble infant. But she also sang that this baby would be a savior and king.
As the words rang out, and the group gathered around the infant to deliver their gifts they had brought, and each knew for certain they were in the presence of God.
As Commander Balthasar brought forward Myrrh he heard the coo of the baby gurgling with joy, he laughed aloud with him and knew that this joy would be with him forever now, because he had the rest of eternity to marvel at this savior who was one with the God who had created the stars.
Emperor Melchior placed Gold, the symbol of royalty and power next to the infant’s resting place and felt a wave of humility knowing that no power in the universe could be as great as this infant King, and his purpose now would be to worship this worthy King. But as he bowed his head he met the eyes of the babe, he knew with certainty that this King also loved him. Melchior was at peace, because he felt assured that his loved ones who had passed were safe in the hands of the God whose love was great enough to send his own son.
Doctor Gaspar brought forward his gift of Frankincense up last, cautiously. He had resisted faith in God for his whole life, felt worried at first when he realized his error. But as he laid his gift down the baby reached up to grasp Gaspar’s hand, and there was only forgiveness in his loving eyes, no wrath, no animosity. Gaspar knew then there was a greater force than any scientific law he had studied before, and he decided then he would dedicate the rest of his life to knowing this God better.
The wisemen came, traveling from afar following this star of wonder not knowing what they would find, but they found something far greater than any of them could have ever hoped for, the true and perfect light of Christ.