We are in the “in-between” time in history. The time between when Jesus ascended to Heaven and the time when Jesus will return. How are you waiting?
When it comes to the in-between stretch, we can learn how to wait by studying Simeon, a man of God mentioned in Luke 2. We pick up the story as Joseph and Mary were taking Jesus to Jerusalem to present him to the Lord. In those days first-borns were consecrated to the Lord and a sacrifice was offered for them in the Temple. That’s when Simeon came into the picture.
“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. It had been revealed to him by the Holy Spirit that he would not die before he had seen the Lord’s Messiah. 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, Simeon took him in his arms and praised God, saying: ‘Sovereign Lord, as you have promised, you may now dismiss your servant in peace. For my eyes have seen your salvation, which you have prepared in the sight of all nations: a light for revelation to the Gentiles, and the glory of your people Israel’” (Luke 2:27-32).
We can all get impatient during a time of waiting. We might ask, “Is Jesus really coming back?” Early believers believed He was re-entering the atmosphere during their lifetime, and many generations have believed the same since. But Simeon remained “righteous and devout” during the time of what might have seemed like never-ending waiting. We should do the same. He also believed what the Holy Spirit had told him, that he would not die before he saw the Lord’s Messiah.
Do we believe what the Bible says about Jesus?
Do we live like He will one day return and reign on Earth?
Simeon listened to the Holy Spirit, and the Spirit speaks to us as well. He tells us the signs of the times—if we are connected through study, prayer and listening. Many of us do believe we are in the last days before Jesus’ return because we know it in our spirit. We feel an urgency in our souls to reach people with hope and truth.
Simeon also spoke truth in his blessing of Mary, Joseph and Jesus:
“This child is destined to cause the falling and rising of many in Israel, and to be a sign that will be spoken against, so that the thoughts of many hearts will be revealed. And a sword will pierce your own soul too”
Sometimes, like Simeon, we have to speak the truth, even if hurts. When we are devout Jesus followers, we can be ostracized by family. We are also convicted about any unrighteousness in our lives. Some run because they don’t want to face their demons.
Simeon was one who waited well. And when he finally realized what God had promised, he had peace. Let’s wait like Simeon. Let’s remain devout and choose a righteous life rather than one that bears no eternal fruit. Let’s listen to the Spirit, see the light and be the light. Let’s live like Jesus could return today—and have no regrets.