It took many generations for the people of Israel to wait for this day to come. Prophets spoke of this promise of the Messiah for many, many years. In the First Reading (Mal. 3: 1-4), the prophet Malachi thus prophesied,
he is coming, says the LORD of hosts. But who will endure the day of his coming?
And who can stand when he appears? For he is like the refiner’s fire, or like the fuller’s lye. He will sit refining and purifying silver, and he will purify the sons of Levi, Refining them like gold or like silver that they may offer due sacrifice to the LORD.”
Yahweh God has been and will always be faithful in fulfilling His promises. In those ancient times, God has been accessible and present in their lives, it was only through Man’s unfaithfulness and sins, God soon appeared to be distant and far away. The reality though is He’s always near, present, and faithful. He promised to send the Messiah to save people from sin and evil.
We celebrate today (Lk. 2: 22-40) the Feast of the Presentation of the Lord, the glorious event of the Lord Jesus being presented in the Temple by Mary and Joseph. The presentation was to fulfill the Law: “Every male that opens the womb shall be consecrated to the Lord, and to offer the sacrifice of a pair of turtledoves or two young pigeons. This Gospel of St. Luke, aside from showing the Jewish rite of purification, is also meant to show that God’s promise to Israel, fulfilled in Jesus, extends to the rest of the world.
During the presentation, there was in Jerusalem a man whose name was Simeon; who was righteous and devout, awaiting the consolation of Israel, and he was filled with the Holy Spirit. It had been revealed to him by the Holy Spirit that “he wouldn’t die before he had seen the Christ of the Lord”. He came in the Spirit into the temple; and when the parents brought in the child Jesus to perform the custom of the law in regard to Him, and recognized Him. What is interesting here is that Simeon may have found fulfillment to his purpose in life. He declared that,
“Now, Master, you may let your servant go in peace, according to your word, for my eyes have seen your salvation, which you prepared in the sight of all the peoples: a light for revelation to the Gentiles, and glory for your people Israel.”
That says deeply about Simeon telling that his life is complete and is ready to go. It is a reminder for us to find and fulfill our purpose in life as well. Because he was a man of faith, the Holy Spirit has revealed to him that he was to meet the Christ Child in the temple at His presentation and to then consecrate this Child to the Father in accordance with the Law.
What about you? Have you found your purpose in life? If you haven’t found it, continue to look for it in faith. It is a purpose that is unique to you as God may have a different one for you and for me. Regardless, we’ll all have a common purpose of receiving Christ in our hearts and minds and sharing this faith to our families and to the world.
Let us pray that one day we may be like Simeon who said, “Master, you may let your servant go in peace…”
“A light of revelation to the Gentiles, and glory for your people Israel.” (Lk. 2: 32)