Collect for Grace
Lord God, almighty and everlasting Father, you have brought us in safety to this new day: Preserve us with your mighty power, that we may not fall into sin, nor be overcome by adversity; and in all we do, direct us to the fulfilling of your purpose; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
Collect for Purity
Almighty God, to you all hearts are open, all desires known, and from you no secrets are hidden: Cleanse the thoughts of our hearts by the inspiration of your Holy Spirit, that we might perfectly love you, and worthily magnify your holy name; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
Read: 1 Samuel 1:1-18, Luke 1:46b-55, and Hebrews 9:1-14
The writer of Hebrews gives a comparison between atonement under the old system (used in the tabernacle and temple) and the new one (since Christ’s death and resurrection). Where before the priest could only go into the most holy place on the day of atonement to sprinkle blood on the altar, Christ became that blood sacrifice and made the most holy place accessible to all – hence the ripping of the veil in Matthew 27:51.
What this means for us on a practical level is that we can pray and expect our prayers to be heard, we can worship and expect our worship to be received, and we can approach God ourselves without an intermediary. We can ask for forgiveness at any time and not just on the Day of Atonement. We can find ourselves in God’s presence. We no longer need the priest to be the go-between, for all believers are priests.
Take a few moments to pray about this. Thank God for allowing you into that holy place. Ask him to help you access it. Ask him to help you repent of your wrongdoings so that you can be made clean. You may find the following prayer helpful:
Stir up your power, O Lord, and with great might come among us; and, because we are sorely hindered by our sins, let your bountiful grace and mercy speedily help and deliver us; through Jesus Christ our Lord, to whom, with you and the Holy Spirit, be honor and glory, now and for ever. Amen.