I pause for a moment
and reflect on God's life-giving presence
in every part of my body, in everything around me,
in the whole of my life.
Daily Prayer - 2012-12-29
I pause for a moment
Lord God I thank you for the gift of freedom.
Help me to use this gift with integrity.
I am free to make choices.
Help me to choose to follow you,
to live in a Christian way by caring for others.
Remind me to consider always those less fortunate than myself,
the oppressed, the prisoner, those who are not free to worship in public.
Guide me always to seek your holy will in all the events of my life.
We all need to take time out from our daily chores.
We know that our bodies need a rest.
When we come into your presence, Lord,
our hearts and minds are refreshed, our spirits lifted.
When the time came for their purification according to the law of Moses, they brought him up to Jerusalem to present him to the Lord (as it is written in the law of the Lord, "Every firstborn male shall be designated as holy to the Lord"), and they offered a sacrifice according to what is stated in the law of the Lord, "a pair of turtledoves or two young pigeons." Now there was a man in Jerusalem whose name was Simeon; this man was righteous and devout, looking forward to the consolation of Israel, and the Holy Spirit rested on him. It had been revealed to him by the Holy Spirit that he would not see death before he had seen the Lord's Messiah. Guided by the Spirit, Simeon came into the temple; and when the parents brought in the child Jesus, to do for him what was customary under the law, Simeon took him in his arms and praised God, saying, "Master, now you are dismissing your servant in peace, according to your word; for my eyes have seen your salvation, which you have prepared in the presence of all peoples, a light for revelation to the Gentiles and for glory to your people Israel." And the child's father and mother were amazed at what was being said about him. Then Simeon blessed them and said to his mother Mary, "This child is destined for the falling and the rising of many in Israel, and to be a sign that will be opposed so that the inner thoughts of many will be revealed--and a sword will pierce your own soul too."
Some thoughts on today's scripture
- The Scripture readings in the season of Christmas often emphasise how the coming of Jesus was the end point of all the initiatives which God ever took in the interests of the people he had chosen. And today we’re reminded that much of this held for the whole non-Jewish world as well.
- But we are warned not to be complacent. Jesus is not going to force himself on anybody. There will always be the choice – to accept him or to reject him.
- That spirit of God who all along (according to Simeon) was master of events, has finally in our own day been sent even more directly into the world by the ascended Jesus.
- In our prayer, we should rely on this Spirit to help us in our choices – and so to bring us to our true destiny.
Words don't come easily to me, Lord.
Look into my heart
and see my longing for peace.
Watch over me, Lord.
I know that you are always by my side.
I thank God for these few moments we have spent alone together and for any insights I may have been given concerning the text.
If you appreciated the daily prayer or have any suggestions or insights we will be glad to hear from you.
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