A Lovely Night Prayer

Simeon and Anna by Arent de Gelder – c 1700 –  He was a student of Rembrandt

29 “Master, now you are dismissing your servant in peace,
    according to your word;
30 for my eyes have seen your salvation,
31     which you have prepared in the presence of all peoples,
32 a light for revelation to the Gentiles
    and for glory to your people Israel.”
Luke 2:29-32

Like the mixing of two currents of water in the ocean, so blend aspects of stories of Jesus’ birth.  Zechariah and Elizabeth represent the ancient longing for the Messiah.  They stand next to young Mary and Joseph filled with happiness of the promise fulfilled in Jesus. In today’s reading, the aged Simeon and Anna meet Mary and Joseph who present Jesus in the Temple.  The Holy Spirit tells them that the quiet, gentle couple with their baby arriving that day is the answer to their deepest prayer.  The Old and the New meet.  Like a plant, the patience of Simeon and Anna brings forth the flower of great joy.  The Song of Simeon, the fourth of the songs in St. Luke’s early stories of Jesus, sweetly lifts Simeon and all of us to the comfort of resting in God’s presence.  

I suggest you pray this song by your bedside before going off to sleep. Jesus rests in your heart as in a temple.   

 Luke 2:22-40

Check out Study Tools in BibleGateway.
I especially recommend the free resource
in Matthew Henry’s Commentary.‘s Commentary.

The Sunday Gospels follow the Revised Common Lectionary.

These Firestarters are for families with children. For the Firestarters in the original edition, I recommend the ebook.  You will have the entire program of well over a thousand of these introductions with you on your phone or table! Check the menu options at the site for more information.

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