Anticipation is a powerful emotion. It stirs in me on a daily basis as I look forward to that first delicious sip of coffee (my needs are simple). Week to week we hope good things will happen, and at the start of a New Year I suspect most are looking forward to something good in 2015.
As we geared up for Christmas I read the Biblical account in the book of Luke (2:25-38), and those two special people Simeon and the prophetess Anna stood out to me and encouraged me not just for Christmas, but for the years (Lord willing) to come.
Their stories tell us what to look forward to, and how to be good “waiters” in 2015.
1. God’s Comfort.
Simeon was looking forward to “the consolation of Israel.” In other words he was waiting for the comfort that God had promised to all people who love Him and follow Him. He is the comforting caring heavenly Father who had for centuries promised to come among His creation and comfort. And here He was – Christ the baby child. Real comfort not just in thoughtful words (as comforting as they can be) but in person!
No matter what you face in 2015, you can expect the comfort of God as you look to Christ as Simeon did. Talk to God in prayer, ask Him to put the events of your life into His perspective, and trust Him for peace.
2. God’s Fix.
Anna too was looking forward to seeing Christ, not so she could post a selfie on Facebook with her heroe! She was looking forward to the “redemption of Jerusalem.” In other words – looking forward to God fixing things. Putting right the mess the world was in. And here was God’s real solution, not just advice, but redemption in person.
No matter what you face in 2015, look to Jesus Christ! The God who rose from the grave, is good at bringing good out of bad situations. This is not to suggest that everything will go well or come right. But it is an expectation that God is Almighty and whether in this life, or the one to come, He has made all things new and you can trust Him to heal, repair, put right and fix the messes we find ourselves in.
Simeon and Anna were wonderful optimists. Their secret? They knew God’s promises from His Word, and they prayed and fasted and served others, as they waited for them to come to reality. This is biblical optimism. This is how to wait.
Here’s a great prayer of the Apostle Paul’s as you look forward to 2015 …
“May the Lord direct your hearts into the love of God, and into the patient waiting for Christ.” 2 Thessalonians 3:5
Happy New Year
God bless, Matt