Years ago, someone told me about the Magnificat, and pointed out its location in the Bible ( New Testament, Gospel of Luke). Not knowing or having the history of the prayer, (of course my prayer life was quite limited at that time), I never developed an appreciation for the prayer. Today I discovered how rich in history this prayer is.
In viewing the above representations of the Magnificat, I see the possibilities of life. I love the garb of Mary, seeing the possibility of realism, yet I love the imagery of the two women which seems to highlight the prayer of the Magnificat, yet what struck me through all the years has been about the Lord providing for persons. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Magnificat
Struggling with Prayer Life:
I discovered the Canticle of Zechariah while attempting to develop a prayer life, not a life in prayer, mind you..... Try as I could, I could not bring myself to appreciate this prayer..... Perhaps I lacked understanding or a willing heart! However having visited the synagogue in Curacao I can attempt to understand the desires of the people. Here is the prayer:
- Blessed be the Lord God of Israel : for he hath visited, and redeemed his people;And hath raised up a mighty salvation for us : in the house of his servant David;As he spoke by the mouth of his holy Prophets : which have been since the world began;That we should be saved from our enemies : and from the hands of all that hate us;To perform the mercy promised to our forefathers : and to remember his holy Covenant;To perform the oath which he sware to our forefather Abraham : that he would give us;That we being delivered out of the hands of our enemies : might serve him without fear;In holiness and righteousness before him : all the days of our life. And thou, Child, shalt be called the Prophet of the Highest : for thou shalt go before the face of the Lord to prepare his ways;To give knowledge of salvation unto his people : for the remission of their sins,Through the tender mercy of our God : whereby the day-spring from on high hath visited us;To give light to them that sit in darkness, and in the shadow of death : and to guide our feet into the way of peace. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Benedictus_(Song_of_Zechariah)
- Lord, now you let your servant go in peace;
- Your word has been fulfilled.
- My eyes have seen the salvation
- You have prepared in the sight of every people,
- A light to reveal you to the nations and the glory of your people, Israel