At First Baptist Church of Zeeland, we exist to know Christ and to make Him known.

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THE GREAT KIND OF WAIT

December 25, 2017

We are all waiting.

 

We wait for the screen to resolve.  We wait for paychecks. We wait for questions to be answered. We wait for the next Apple creation.  We wait for the light to change.  Sometimes we wait with patience.  Other times, we press.  Mostly, we wait for good things.  No one stands in line to lose, be disappointed, suffer, or be ignored.  We wait for good things.  We wait for blessing, amusement, and reward.  We wait for what will make things better.

 

There is waiting for small blessings, and then there is waiting for the Blessed Hope. Luke 2 provides for us a Great Waiter.  Simeon, a man righteous and devout, who was waiting for the “consolation of Israel.”  Consolation means “the alleviation of grief and sorrow.”  Consolation means better has come.  Consolation means rest for a weary soul.  Are you tired of waiting?  Could we allow the Scripture to reshape our waiting?  Because, there is a great way to wait.  Great waiting is waiting with certainty for what the soul longs for, and Simeon did just that.

 

What kind of man was he?  Righteous and devout. It means he was in tune with God and He loved what God loves.  Essentially, his life was about God getting glory, and He reveled in God’s glory advancing on earth.  We are now told how he knew that Messiah was coming to the temple (Jesus’ dedication as a child at the temple) but we know that he was ready to witness.  The Scripture says, “It had been revealed to him through the Holy Spirit that he would not die until he had seen the Lord’s Christ.”  So, that is another thing he we learn of him:  he was distinctly moved and responsive to the Holy Spirit.  Want to wait with certain hope?  I think Simeon gives us some clues as to how.  Be holy, and practice righteousness.  Devote yourself to God.  Surrender your life to the leadership and voice of God’s Holy Spirit.  That is what I and seeking to do, because I want to wait with expectant, certain hope.

 

When Simeon holds Jesus, he says words that we every born-again believer can confirm: “For my wyes have seen your salvation, which you have prepared in the presence of all people.”  We too, by the revelation that comes to our hearts, recognizing Jesus Christ as Savior, can state too that all salvation, including our future deliverance from the presence of sin forever, is in and through Jesus Christ.

 

In this broken world, where many choose to amuse themselves and self-prescribe remedies that are temporary and underwhelming, we can choose to seek something that barely gets us through the day, or we can choose to wait like Simeon.  Psalm 37:3-7 gives us the verbs of faith:  Trust, delight, commit, be still, wait patiently. 

 

You are waiting.  I am waiting.  Let us wait, this Christmas victoriously.  Let us wait with joy-filled expectation of a great glory and greater good that is coming in Jesus. 

 

Life is hard, and I hurt like you do.  There are so many disappointments, so many failings with sin, so many consequences, and so man false gods offering us false hope.  But, knowing Jesus, seeking to please God and devoting myself to His plans, I can wait.  I can wait with certainty.  It’s a great kind of wait.

 

Prayer- “Father, give us the faith to wait with hope, joy, and patience.  Give us the Holy Spirit’s fruit of enduring joy, enduring love, enduring kindness, enduring patience, goodness and faithfulness, gentleness an self-control.  We want to wait on You, leaving our trust in Your plans.  Forgive us our impatient unfaithfulness.  Forgive us our waiting without great expectation. Give us greater faith this Christmas, as we recognize that all salvation is in Jesus. Amen.”

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