Blessed Presentation of the Lord to one and all. Oh, how I love dear Simeon. He and Anna are two of my favorite people mentioned in the Gospels. They waited and waited and prayed and prayed for YEARS........not hours or days. The reward of all those years? A glimpse of the infant God. That is all they wanted. A glimpse, to hold Him once, to see Him once. How exquisite is the beauty of God, if two human souls prepared their hearts with the fasting and prayers of a whole lifetime to see Him only once. And to prophesy His sufferings and his Mother's sufferings. That was their vocation....to wait for Him to come.
Most of us want TOO much in our prayers. We want assurances and proofs and material possessions and status and long comfortable lives........even from our religion. We pray for so many selfish reasons. We think our vocations need to be interesting and full of events and successes to be true vocations. We doubt a lot when they are not. But Simeon only wanted one thing........to SEE God and rejoice in His faithfulness to Israel. I stand in awe of that simplicity and unselfishness. Maybe people wondered about him when they came to the temple. Maybe they wondered why he didn't do something more with his life. Get out there and be a mover and shaker! But it was Simeon who recognized Jesus when He came, not the movers and shakers. Of all those babies presented that day, he knew the Christ. Humility looking down at Humility.
No wonder then, that this feast is surrounded by the pure light of LITTLE flames. The candles of Candlemas. Simeon and Anna burned steady and long - two lovely candles to light our way to the Christ and show us how to recognize Him.