From Pauses for Pentecost
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.
Easter people believe that we live each day in the overlapping of two realities. On the one hand, there is our Earthly space in which we go about our daily activities. This is the visible realm that we get to know through our five senses. On the other hand, there is the Heavenly space where God lives and reigns. This is the invisible realm that we discover when we start trusting and following Christ. The big question for us is: How do we discern how and where God is at work around us?
Simeon was a Spirit-filled person who learned to do this. He was old and had patiently waited to see God’s saving work in his lifetime. When Jesus’s parents took Jesus as a child to the Temple courts, Simeon immediately recognized that this was a God moment. He took Jesus in his arms, praised God, and cried out, “Sovereign Lord, as you have promised, you can 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 of revelation to the Gentiles, and for glory to your people Israel,” (Luke 2:29-32).
What was the source of his deep spiritual sensitivity? Put bluntly, Simeon is devout. Three times in two verses his name is associated with the Holy Spirit. Obviously, he lives a God-yielded, God-filled, God-committed life. His passionate devotion finds special expression in his study of the scriptures. All the words he speaks come from the prophetic vision of Isaiah in chapters 40–55. Simeon recognizes what God is doing because he is open to God and regular in devotion. He devotes himself to God and to a prayerful study of scripture. Are we willing to follow his example?
Think of one way you deliberately can express your devotion to God today. With the help of God’s Spirit, express that devotion over the next few hours.