8th Day of Christmas

Luke 2:22-40

Reflection— v.25 ‘…and the Holy Spirit rested on him.’

It is a simple reflection, but being too proud to admit we even need help, it is one we really dislike. Thankfully, God saves us anyway, whether we like the way he does it or not. And here’s the truth: the most common way we encounter the Spirit of God is as he comes to us in the heart of another person who helps us. Help is found in what Pope Francis likes to call ‘encounter’ (in the Spanish, encuentro, a meeting of the two, a coming together). We have noted in the Psalms and in Mary’s Song that it is through encounter that God comes to saves us, as God’s face turns toward us. Those who truly help us, whether we have known them our whole lives or they are complete strangers to us, do so because there is a meeting, a coming together, a mutual seeing, in which help is found. This is why we must never reduce our need for help—or our desire to offer help, for that matter—to a mere transaction, a trade of services. There is no salvation in that. Help happens in the relationship between people, because this is the place where the Holy Spirit lives most fully and truly.

Prayer Holy Spirit, my heart is open to all who, like Simeon, come to help me.