When I read Luke chapter two, two individuals stand out to me as having been prepared for the coming of Messiah: Simeon and Anna. The first was promised life until he witnessed the birth of Christ, the “consolation of Israel.” The latter, Anna, was faithful in the temple serving God day and night with fasting and prayer. One striking similarity between these two individuals is clearly evident; they possessed what I would like to call, a sense of urgency.
They were watching and waiting. Unlike Peter and the other disciples who fell asleep when Jesus went to pray in the garden, Simeon and Anna were ready. Being ready has more to do with character than it does with patience in relation to the Lord’s timing. Simeon was a “just and devout” man whom the Holy Ghost was upon. Anna was called a “prophetess” who “served God with fastings and prayers night and day.” Both individuals were looking for the promised redeemer, the hope of Israel. But more than simply looking, they were living their lives in such a manner as to be ready for His coming. Similar admonitions can be found in the New Testament as it concerns the church and the return of Christ at the rapture. We are to remain watchful, ready, vigilant and virtuous.
We can and should possess the same spirit of anticipation that Simeon and Anna had at the first coming of Christ. But it involves us being rightly related to God and His commands; it involves us walking in the light as He is in the light. Such hope enables us to purify ourselves, “even as He is pure.” And it will allow us to, “have confidence and not be ashamed before Him at His coming.”