Hello, this is Shelley! I have been married to Keith for 19 years and spend most of my time keeping track of our 5 kids (Tommy, Hunter, Joseph, Ben and Anna). I have loved being a part of Riverside and am excited to share with you today.
Today we are looking at Luke 2: 21- 40.
The passage starts off with Mary and Joseph presenting Jesus at the temple to be circumcised.
We then quickly have two new characters show up-Simeon and Anna. I often think of the words that Luke uses to describe Simeon and Anna. Some words used to describe them are righteous and devout, worshipful and prayerful. The Message version described Simeon as “a man who lived in the prayerful expectancy of help for Israel.”
Wow. These are powerful words to describe someone. Simeon was waiting and trusting that the Lord would show up. Someone like Simeon is just at the tail end of the 400 years of silence in scripture. The gap between writing in the Old Testament and Jesus showing up on earth is over 400 years. But here was Simeon, living in the prayerful expectancy of help for Israel. You then read his prayer and read his continued words of prophecy of this little baby.
And then Anna-an older, widowed woman who was in the temple day and night, fasting and praying and worshiping the Lord. For year after year after year. Once she saw Jesus, she felt the need to share with everyone about his coming and how he was fulfilling the promise of a savior of their people.
I am challenged by both of their reactions to Jesus, and their consistency of character as they waited for the coming of Christ. They both immediately recognize him as the one who has been prophesied which means they had to KNOW the prophecy. They had to know their Hebrew Bible. They had to be communicating with God and listening to his voice. Also, their character is recognized by the author and their community. They were known as people who loved God, worshiped God and walked in his ways.
I know this is something I want in my life and I would hope that all of us would strive for. That we would hide God’s word in our hearts, that we would take the Lord at his word and that we would not be afraid to shout with joy that we too have experienced Jesus and all that he has done for us.
- What are ways that you are daily pursuing the Lord? Do you have a plan for what this looks like?
- Pick one verse to work on memorizing this week.
- If you know someone who is a Simeon or an Anna in your life, take time to encourage them. Take time to ask them what their walk with Jesus looks like.