Archive for December 20th, 2012

A Christmas Focus

December 20th, 2012

Life is only complete when you hold the Savior in your heart.

“I have seen the Savior You have given to all people.” Luke 2:30 NLT.

Like Joseph, Simeon is another lesser noticed person in the Christmas narrative. But he shouldn’t be. Uniquely, he was a man with a focus on something more than that with which others were content. “Simeon . . was just and devout . . and the Holy Spirit was upon him.” Luke 2:25-35 NKJV. God’s Spirit rests where He feels welcome. What little is known about Simeon is still remarkable; his testimony was that God had spoken to his heart that he would live to see the Messiah. “The Holy Spirit had revealed to him that he would not die until he had seen the Lord’s Messiah.” Vs. 26 NLT. Simeon’s heart held a promise; his life had a purpose; his focus was clear.

Generations in Israel had waited for the promise of Messiah. God’s whisper in Simeon’s heart set the course and priorities for his lifetime. Imagine living your life with such a clear, persuasive purpose that supersedes every lesser consideration. See Philippians 3:13-14 NKJV. While others busied their days aimlessly or with trivial concerns, Simeon had a heart with a single focus – to see Messiah, Israel’s hope and salvation. He was single minded, strongly focused, fervently anticipating, patiently waiting, and actively pursuing.

That word in his heart brought Simeon to the Temple precisely at the moment Joseph and Mary arrived with the baby Jesus, now only days old. This was providence not coincidence. “That day the Spirit led him to the Temple. So when Mary and Joseph came to present the baby Jesus to the Lord . . Simeon was there.” Vs. 27-28 NLT. Simeon was there, exactly when and where he should have been, because he was attentive to the Spirit’s direction. His life-long quest was fulfilled as he held the Savior in His arms. God can bring you where you need to be for the joy of your life to be fulfilled anew.

Imagine Simeon’s joy, “Lord, now I can die in peace! As you promised me, I have seen the Savior You have given for all people. He is a light to reveal God to the nations, and the glory of Your people Israel.” Vs. 29-32 NLT. Life is only complete when you hold the Savior in your heart. “Though you have not seen Him, you love Him . . you believe in him . .  and are filled with an inexpressible and glorious joy, for you are receiving the goal of your faith, the salvation of your souls.” 1 Peter 1:8-9 NIV.

That’s Simeon’s story, but my concern today is about your story, and mine. This Christmas cannot be what it could be, unless Jesus is the heart of your expectation and celebration. There is no better place, ever or anywhere, than when and where your yearning successfully concludes with giving yourself to the Savior who gave Himself for you. Read Titus 2:11-14 NIV/Galatians 2:20 NKJV.

This Advent, the Angel’s announcement to the shepherds is also to you, “I bring you good news of great joy that will be to all people. Today . . a Savior has been born to you; He is Christ the Lord.” Luke 2:10-11 NIV. This is my Christmas focus: Christmas is an event too glorious not to be joyously celebrated with abandon, and too precious not to be gladly shared with one and all.

My prayer for you this Advent is that His holy day will be at the center of your holidays.

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