The Christmas story speaks to every human heart—as human and as person. We recongize that all of us need a Savior; all are called to give and receive and respond to grace. We have a universal vocation to holiness. But we also have a particular vocation—a call addressed to each of us as a unique individual.
The history of the Jews includes the story of countless righteous men. But only Simeon had been intimately assured by the Holy Spirit that he would not die before meeting the Messiah. From among all the shepherds in the world, a particular few were chosen to witness the miracle of the heavenly host.
It's strange and wonderful to think how little we understand of our own vocation—our own place in salvation history—even as it is unfolding. (Did Simeon have any inkling that his words "Now let your servant go in peace; your word has been fulfilled" would be prayed daily in homes and monasteries throughout the world 2000 years later?) Much of our lives are lived under a veil of not-understanding. But we have promises to go by—the ones given to us as human beings, as baptized, and as individuals. So we pray, and wait, and live in fidelity, trusting that it will be revealed in the fulness of time.