Expectant waiting

At that time there was a man in Jerusalem named Simeon. He was righteous and devout and was eagerly waiting for the Messiah to come and rescue Israel. The Holy Spirit was upon him and had revealed to him that he would not die until he had seen the Lord’s Messiah. That day the Spirit led him to the Temple. So when Mary and Joseph came to present the baby Jesus to the Lord as the law required, Simeon was there. He took the child in his arms and praised God, saying, “Sovereign Lord, now let your servant die in peace, as you have promised. I have seen your salvation, which you have prepared for all people. He is a light to reveal God to the nations, and he is the glory of your people Israel!” — Luke 2:25–32

A mother told her two sons that she was about to bake some homemade chocolate chip cookies for them. They both licked their lips, eyes sparkling at the thought of warm, chewy cookies fresh from the oven.

The oldest son ran off to play his video game, getting lost in an electronic world on the screen. The youngest son, however, sat at the kitchen counter watching his mom make the dough, then scoop the cookies onto the baking sheet and place them in the oven.

They chatted as the cookies baked, and when they came out, he excitedly watched as she set them on a rack to cool. Soon, she took one, still warm, and handed it to him. She called out to the other son, but he was so busy at his game that he’d forgotten about the treat.

In today’s reading, Simeon is like that youngest son. He had heard God’s promise of a Messiah, and rather than just go about life waiting but not watching for it, he expectantly believed God would do what He said He would.

And so, when Jesus came, Simeon was ready, and he was one of the first to recognize the child for who He really was – the promised salvation he’d been waiting for!

We are living in the time when the promise of salvation has already come, but we are yet waiting for the promise of Christ’s return. Are you busying yourself with other things, or are you waiting with expectation, talking to God, and watching Him work around you as you wait?

Prayer Challenge

Today, ask God to help you wait expectantly for His promises just as Simeon did.

Questions for thought

What is something you are looking forward to seeing or receiving?

How can we be looking out for God’s promises like Simeon did?