First Sunday after Christmas
Decades ago my Great-aunt Ruth was in grave health but kept hanging on, even though it seemed she was physically at the end of her life in this world. Soon it became clear she was waiting for her grandson, David, to return safely from his tour of duty in Vietnam. His return was some months away, but she was deter-mined. She successfully welcomed him home with hugs and kisses. Soon after, she died. Her desire was fulfilled.
Today many people have bucket lists of things they plan to do before their time on earth ends. I recently started a bucket list for myself, but anyone can create a bucket list at any age. Do you have a list? Are you making progress? What do you still want to do with your remaining time on earth?
Simeon and Anna from our Gospel reading today may not have had a bucket list, but they did long to see God’s Holy One in this world. Anna was age eighty-four, and Simeon would not see death before he had seen the Lord’s Messiah, implying he too was elderly. Simeon, guided by the Holy Spirit, was at the right place at the right time to see the Lord’s Messiah, to hold him, and to declare that the child Jesus was the One for whom the world and Simeon were waiting. Anna’s long wait finally culminated as she too regarded God’s Promised One.
Anna and Simeon did not see Jesus grow and mature or begin his public ministry. However, they did get to see the future that Jesus would bring to all peoples, a future that includes salvation, and revelation, and glory.
What are you waiting for? Does it depend on something or someone? Where is God in the midst of your wait? Your future depends on it.
Rich Thierolf, chaplain, Moravian Manor