Read Luke 2:25-35
As we enter this story today, we find a man waiting for consolation. Have you ever been there? Perhaps you’ve been waiting for some answers or waiting for someone to show up and offer some relief. If so, you can empathize with Simeon as he sits in the waiting room of life. On top of his own story, he follows a long legacy of those who have been waiting, too. Generations upon generations before him have been waiting on relief from their constant fight for freedom under generations of oppression.
Yet, suddenly, right in the middle of the waiting room, comfort appears. Simeon’s comfort first comes with a promise. Luke says, “It had been revealed to him by the Holy Spirit that he would not see death before he had seen the Lord’s Christ” (Luke 2:26). What a lucky guy! The Spirit came to comfort him and reveal that the story is not over. In fact, this promise means big changes are on the horizon. Nevertheless, the waiting period wasn’t over for him. Simeon continued waiting – until comfort came as a little tiny person.
As Simeon takes the precious newborn in his arms, you can almost feel the comfort welling up in his soul. His long-awaited comfort had come! His eyes had seen the faithfulness of God first hand. His hands had touched the promise of God fulfilled. And his heart leapt for joy. This account of Simeon’s life is now our comfort. And, just like for Simeon, our comfort first comes in the form of a promise and then, one day, in the form of a person.
Reflection and Response
Today, use the first verse of this old Christmas Carol by Charles Wesley as a prayer for comfort. Jesus is not only Israel’s consolation; he is your promised comfort, too. Pray for God to comfort you today through this song that has been sung for over 250 years:
Come, Thou long-expected Jesus,/ Born to set Thy people free;/ From our fears and sins release us,/ Let us find our rest in Thee./ Israel’s Strength and Consolation,/ Hope of all the earth Thou art;/ Dear Desire of every nation,/ Joy of every longing heart.
By Yvonne Biel