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Waiting for Christmas

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 upon him.” (Luke 2:25)

I’m not a philosopher, so not sure why, but waiting seems easier for people now than it used to be. The average age of marriage now is 30. I met my wife at 22…so, yeah, not waiting 8 years!! On my 16th birthday, I was in line at the DMV. Waiting wasn’t easy for me.

I remember as a kid the challenge of waiting for Christmas. We had countdowns…advent calendars. I read the comics every day and Snoopy had his own countdown. Things weren’t that challenging right after Thanksgiving…Christmas was still a million years away. But man, get to December…only 25 days…and don’t forget shopping days!

Once Sears catalogs started coming in the mail…once decorations starting going up…and what was worse, once gifts started appearing beneath the tree. So hard to wait!

But the idea of waiting is an underlying theme of Christmas…waiting for the Messiah…waiting for the advent…and here we are today still waiting for the second coming of the Lord.

Simeon emerges from the Scriptures as a beautiful picture of waiting contentedly, even patiently, with hope for the heart of Christmas: the coming of the Savior.

Luke tells us Simeon was “waiting for the consolation of Israel.” We might interpret that he was waiting for Israel’s salvation or deliverance. I can imagine his prayer was, “God, help your people, Israel.”

We’re not told specifically his age, but we get the impression he was old and that he had been waiting for years for Jesus.

He was a regular feature at the Temple, but on this day, the Spirit of God revealed to him that Mary and Joseph’s child was the one he’d been waiting for. Interestingly, Simeon’s name in Hebrew means “he who hears.” God spoke to Simeon and Simeon heard him.

Years before, Simeon had been given an assignment from God. It wasn’t necessarily exciting, but it was the assignment God gave him: WAIT. Simeon waited well.

Are you waiting for God to move in your life? Are you waiting for God to answer a prayer? Waiting isn’t easy. Let’s talk about it Sunday.


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