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Advent to Epiphany Blog

Luke 2:22-40

Luke 2:22-40 (NIV)

22 When the time came for the purification rites required by the Law of Moses 
Joseph and Mary took him to Jerusalem to present him to the Lord 23 (as it is
written in the Law of the Lord, “Every firstborn male is to be consecrated to the
Lord”), 24 and to offer a sacrifice in keeping with what is said in the Law of the
Lord: “a pair of doves or two young pigeons.” 25 Now there was a man in Jerusalem
called Simeon, who was righteous and devout. He was waiting for the consolation
of Israel, and the Holy Spirit was on him. 26 It had been revealed to him by the Holy
Spirit that he would not die before he had seen the Lord’s Messiah. 27 Moved by the
Spirit, he went into the temple courts. When the parents brought in the child Jesus to
do for him what the custom of the Law required, 28 Simeon took him in his arms
and praised God, saying: 29 “Sovereign Lord, as you have promised, you may now
dismiss your servant in peace. 30 For my eyes have seen your salvation, 31 which
you have prepared in the sight of all nations: 32 a light for revelation to the Gentiles,
and the glory of your people Israel.” 33 The child’s father and mother marveled at
what was said about him. 34 Then Simeon blessed them and said to Mary, his mother:
“This child is destined to cause the falling and rising of many in Israel, and to be a
sign that will be spoken against, 35 so that the thoughts of many hearts will be revealed.
And a sword will pierce your own soul too.” 36 There was also a prophet, Anna, the
daughter of Penuel, of the tribe of Asher. She was very old; she had lived with her husband
seven years after her marriage, 37 and then was a widow until she was eighty-four. 
She never left the temple but worshiped night and day, fasting and praying.
38 Coming up to them at that very moment, she gave thanks to God and spoke about the
child to all who were looking forward to the redemption of Jerusalem. 39 When Joseph and
Mary had done everything required by the Law of the Lord, they returned to Galilee to their
own town of Nazareth. 40 And the child grew and became strong; he was filled with
wisdom, and the grace of God was on him.

 

You can’t go through life completely avoiding preparations. You may disagree and say sometimes you improvise but it is very possible that you still prepared, only in a different form, not necessarily physical preparation but perhaps mentally. We prepare for Thanksgiving and Christmas, we prepare to attend college, we prepare for exams, even the changing seasons…sometimes we prepare with the knowledge of possible outcomes but that isn’t always the case. There are certain things which we are bound to come across without an idea of how it will fit into life’s puzzle, just like Mary and Joseph, Simeon and Anna, yet, we are chosen to be responsible for it.

These people may not have known the reason for doing what they were doing, they still followed through out of obedience. Mary and Joseph were obedient parents, to God and the Jewish Torah in the upbringing of the Christ child. Simeon waited patiently on the Lord’s promise to him and Anna kept her hope in God. All of them were blessed because of their obedience and faithfulness to God in waiting and preparing. In short, sometimes it will take a few more steps down the road to reach an understanding.

Our short-sightedness as humans, sometimes leaves us frustrated and disappointed in the process, keeping us from moving on, but we mustn’t let that get to us. Like it or not, we all need to be constantly reminded that we should seize and cherish each and every second of our lives though, easier said than done since frustrations and disappointments are part of life, but even those should be cherished because of the hope and confidence we know we have in Christ.

The awareness that there is hope, something for us to look forward to, is what makes each part of life meaningful. As we enter a new year, add this to your list of resolutions: to make every second of your life count, find meaning in the mundane and don’t forget about the bigger picture.

Deborah Martin is from Penang, Malaysia. She is a junior studying music and business administration.

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