the time when the Lord would comfort Israel; and he had been assured, by the Holy Spirit, that he would not die before seeing the
Messiah of the Lord. So, he was led into the temple by the Holy Spirit at the time the parents brought the child Jesus, to do for him
according to the custom of the law. Simeon took the child in his arms, and blessed God, saying, “Now, O Lord, you can dismiss your
servant in peace, for you have fulfilled your word and my eyes have seen your salvation, which you display for all the people to see. Here
is the light you will reveal to the nations, and the glory of your people Israel.” His father and mother wondered at what was said about
the child. Simeon blessed them, and said to Mary, his mother, “Know this: your son is a sign; a sign established for the falling
and rising of many in Israel, a sign of contradiction; and a sword will pierce your own soul, so that, out of many hearts,
thoughts may be revealed.” There was also a prophetess named Anna, daughter of Phanuel, of the tribe of Asher.
After leaving her father’s home, she had been seven years with her husband; and since then, she had been continually
about the temple, serving God, as a widow, night and day, in fasting and prayer. She was now eighty-four. Coming up
at that time, she gave praise to God, and spoke of the child to all who looked forward to the deliverance of Jerusalem.
When the parents had fulfilled all that was required by the law of the Lord, they returned to their town, Nazareth
in Galilee. There, the child grew in stature and strength, and was filled with wisdom: the grace of God was upon him.
Simeon and Anna sensed something special about baby
Jesus who didn’t seem any different from other babies
brought to the temple, because their spiritual antennae were
sharp enough to pick up resonances of the Spirit. The
truth is, every child is special and brings with it the message
of God’s deep love for humanity. As Pablo Picasso said, “every
child is an artist. The problem is how to remain an artist once
we grow up.” They lose the artistry precisely because we
adults fail to see it in them and nurture it. As Nelson Mandela
remarked, “There can be no keener revelation of a society’s
soul than the way in which it treats its children.” Child
abuse can only exist in a world which has lost its own sense of
transcendence. Today we pray for all the victims of child abuse.
Today we consecrate all children of the world to God.
© Copyright Bible Diary 2022