Fifth Day within the Octave of the Nativity of the Lord
Memorial Feast: Saint Thomas Becket, Martyr, (c.1118-+1170) Patron Saint of Exeter College, Portsmouth, City of London
First John 2:3-11; Psalm 96:1-2a, 2b-3, 5b-6 and Luke 2:22-35
Today’s Gospel narrative relates the story of Simeon, who was a righteous and devout man who was told by the Holy Spirit that he would not die before he had seen Christ the Lord. Simeon listened and trusted the Word of God and was in the right place at the right time, and the promise was fulfilled. He was able to hold the baby Jesus in his arms and see the face of God. Imagine that! I know whenever I hold a baby in my arms, I feel as if I am in the presence of God. Life is such a miracle, especially as reflected in a baby’s tiny nose, exquisite fingers and toes, the softest skin, and whippiest hair (if there is any).
I am certain that Simeon felt those human emotions when he held baby Jesus, but the Holy Spirit enabled him to see and feel even more. We hear him as he holds the baby and blesses God. He also tells Mary and Joseph a little of what they can expect in the future. I believe Mary and Joseph were still coming to grips with their new family, much like any person with a new baby. However, these parents have the added joy and responsibility, and in time, sorrow for His suffering that their Son is the light of the world.
Just as Simeon, we can heed the Holy Spirit and cradle Jesus in our hearts and through our actions. The first reading from Saint John reminds us that we have to follow the commandments and love our brothers to be in the light. This is excellent advice.
Question of the Day: How will you look upon others as brothers and sisters in the Lord?
Prayer: “Sing to the Lord a new song; sing to the Lord, all you lands. Sing to the Lord; bless his name.” (Psalm 96)