The Feast of the Presentation of the Lord
Our first reading today foretells the coming of the Lord to the Temple, fulfilled in our Gospel when Mary and Joseph bring the baby Jesus to the Temple, according to Jewish custom, to present him to the Lord. But this Lord, says our first reading, comes to purify, like a refiner's insanely hot fire or a fuller's chemically harsh lye...and in both examples we are the thing that is being purified. God, like a good parent, wants to raise His children to be strong, mature, able, loving adults. The process is not magic, nor is it easy, nor can our Parent do it for us - it involves our own growth and maturation through the process of accepting the challenges and purification our Father offers. This week, instead of running from that purification or making excuses like, "It's just the way I am," how will we lean into God's purification and mature into the adult He knows we can be?