Most of us have heard about the three Wise Men and their gifts of gold, frankincense and myrrh.  But the way the story was explained to me this weekend really got me thinking.

Why did the Wise Men choose these gifts and what do they mean?  The storyteller told me that gold is symbolic of love, which is the thing we are all seeking to give and to receive.  As Lao Tzu once said, “Being deeply loved by someone gives you strength, while loving someone deeply gives you courage.”

Frankincense is symbolic of our talents and what we have to offer the world.  Each of us is completely unique with skills that are one-of-a-kind.  Using those abilities, and being who we truly are, is the ultimate success.  As Madeleine L’Engle once said, “We can’t take any credit for our talents.  It’s how we use them that counts.”

And myrrh is symbolic of our struggles and our pain. We all have things in life that break us down. But it’s the rising when we fall.  The lessons that we learn.  As Khalil Gibran once said, “Out of suffering have emerged the strongest souls; the most massive characters are seared with scars.”

So those three Wise Men really were quite wise.  They brought the gifts of love, talent and struggle. All of which are key to happiness in life.  If we love ourselves and those around us, use our unique skills to make a difference in the world, remember to see the light at the end of the tunnel and learn from our hardships, we are on our way.

These are gifts we all have.  Will we use them today?