Rembrandt (1606-1669) Simeon in the Temple oil on panel, 1627-1628 Hamburg, Hamburger Kunsthalle
There was also a prophetess, Anna, the daughter of Phanuel, of the tribe of Asher. She was advanced in years, having lived seven years with her husband after her marriage, and then as a widow until she was eighty-four. She never left the temple, but worshiped night and day with fasting and prayer. And coming forward at that very time, she gave thanks to God and spoke about the child to all who were awaiting the redemption of Jerusalem. Luke 2:36-38
God’s Holy Family encompasses every human person—from infants to the elderly. We are all equally important in the eyes and heart of God. We all have something to offer to others. No matter what our age, we are all called to open our minds, eyes, and hearts to encounter the Lord every day.
Henry Ossawa Tanner, American (active France), 1859 – 1937 The Annunciation, 1898 oil on canvas Philadelphia Museum of Art
The angel Gabriel was sent from God to a town of Galilee called Nazareth, to a virgin betrothed to a man named Joseph, of the house of David, and the virgin’s name was Mary. Luke 1:26-27
God sends specific messengers to specific locations to specific people every day.
I met several of God’s messengers at the Salvation Army Friday. Some were tiny children crying for their mothers. Some were cranky or bossy or argumentative adults. I did my best to keep saying “yes” to bearing God’s Love into the swirl of human emotions. It took all my energy.
Some messengers were kind and efficient, unfailingly gracious and cheerful. They are a living example of saying “yes” to being Love Bearers in our world where all of us just want to love and be loved.