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. It had been revealed to him by the Holy Spirit that he would not die before he had seen the Lord’s Christ. 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 now dismiss your servant in peace. – Luke 2:25-29
Simeon hangs at the Temple almost every day. Sometime in the past God made a promise to him. God had designed a special road for Simeon: he would see Christ. He would stare into the eyes of God in the flesh. He would hold the one who was present at the creation of the world. He would touch God.
Maybe he woke every day wondering “Is this the day?” Perhaps we would see parents come with a child and his heart would skip a beat. After a long day of no baby Christ, maybe he went home a bit disappointed thinking “maybe tomorrow.”
It is interesting to me that Simeon’s plan is to see the baby Christ. Somewhere God had made a promise that Simeon would not die until he saw him. That was enough for Simeon, to see Christ. But why stop there? Why not press in and ask God for more than that? I fear that I would not have accepted what God had promised. It just didn’t seem like enough.
I can imagine a conversation if I was Simeon. God says I can see Christ as a baby. Not being disrespectful in any form, but wanting to ring everything I can out of the situation, I might go a step further.
“Awesome,” I would say, “Thank you for that. Thanks for taking me down this road. If that was all, it would be great, but if I may, let me ask for more. How about I watch over Mary and Joseph, become like a helper and mentor to the young couple? How about I help out with Jesus? Later, I can be a disciple of his and follow him anywhere he goes? I can write down the things that he says and be the author of some writings in the Bible. I will be a wise teacher to others. I can start all of my talks with the story of the day I looked into the eyes of baby God. Later, we can establish this thing called the ‘Church’ and I can help get that going, since we are close and all. Seeing Jesus would be great, but I think there is so much more. Why stop short?”
Why stop short? Because God had a plan for Simeon. He had designed for Simeon to go this far on the journey and no further. His ways are sometimes not our ways.
At times I look at other people and get jealous. Not always for what they have, but what they do. Sometimes I see people who are crazy effective in ministry, doing such great stuff and I envy every experience that they have. I think about what it would be like to be them. I rationalize that the kingdom would be better if I could do what they did. The problem is, it is not my road. God has somehow designed things for me as I follow him and serve his cause. It is a road designed for me. In my mind, it may not be all that I think it should. I want more curves, better views, switchbacks, straightaways, and certainly a much faster and longer ride. But it is not my road. I simply travel it.
God, thanks for the journey. I am sorry that I often complain about the path that I travel. My mind knows that you are the designer and that you know much more than I. My heart sometimes dreams differently. I will walk this road, trusting you. Somewhere along the way, I know I will see you. Truth is, I already have. And it is enough.
[tags]life journaling, luke, simeon, God’s will, Jesus, church[/tags]