Jean Stepnoski (29 Dec 2011)
"Tevet 10 and Epiphany: 1-5 to 6 in 2012"

Dear Doves,
      Tevet 10 is the fast of Day 10 of the 10th Month of the Scriptural Year. On this day of 1-5-2012, observant Jews will have a solemn fast from sunrise to sunset. It is customary for Jews to fast before going to the chuppah, the wedding canopy, for their weddings. It is THE LAST DAY of the 4 days of fasting mentioned by the prophet Zechariah. The other three earlier ones are the fasts of Tammuz 17, Av 9, then Yom Kippur (the Solemn Day of Atonement). As sunset arrives to start 1-6-2012, so begins The Day of Great Joy known as The Feast of Epiphany. These are days of stark contrast going from solemnity to great joy! Epiphany ends the Season of Christmas, the 12 Days of Christmas, it is THE LAST DAY! In a sense, Epiphany also symbolically includes the prelude periods toward Christmas of Advent and Hanukkah. Never forget that the events of Hanukkah ultimately led up to the First Advent of Messiah/Christ! This Day Concludes, wraps it up!
      It is customary for Jews to fast before their weddings. Some warnings which The Master gave were about "the cares of life" like eating too much, drinking too many alcoholic beverages and sleepiness just before His arrival. It is wise to avoid eating too much or alcoholic beverages when ending a fast since the after affects will be compounded and worsened. The evening ending Tevet 10 is a night of danger for those overwhelmed by "the cares of life" like these. Also, some of the first credit card bills for Holiday spending are starting to arrive. Stress and worry about incoming bills and  impending payment of annual taxes are also "cares of life" are they not?
      When we research Epiphany on wikipedia we learn it is about "manifestation" or "striking appearance" or Theophany which means "vision of God", which celebrates the revelation of God the Son as a human being in Messiah/Christ. Some associate Epiphany with the visitation of the Magi and therefore the beginning of Christ's manifestation to the pagans, the Gentiles, the World. Some associate it with His baptism. Epiphany also is called "The Day of the Lights" and "the Lights." So Hanukkah and Epiphany are each about LIGHTS and JOY and REVELATION! It will be 70 days past 10-26-2011 going 2450 days to Yom Kippur in 2018.
      If the LAST DAY of HANUKKAH is not The DAY of THE BLESSED HOPE, there are many good reasons to believe we are still in THE SEASON OF HIS COMING. In 2012, Tevet 10 going into Epiphany, each THE LAST DAY, are days well worth our attention and prayerful consideration. Come quickly, Lord...
With Love and Shalom,