Patience Rewarded

Tuesday, February 1, 2005

Luke 2:25-26 – 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. (NIV)

I was standing in line at the grocery store waiting to be checked out. There were only two cashiers working at this time. The lines were long and slow. The lady ahead of me had become a self-appointed efficiency expert on how the cashier could speed up progress.

"She could have bagged the eggs while waiting for the credit card to clear," she said, commenting on her serving the first one in line.

The next customer had failed to check for a price before approaching the counter. The next lady waited until the cashier had rung up the total before getting out her chequebook.

"She could have had the cheque written — all except the amount," she said, "thereby saving a lot of time."

I asked the lady if she was in a great hurry.

"No," she laughed. "I'm just the impatient type. I like for everything to run smoothly and quickly. My friends say I pray for patience and demand God to give it to me right now."

I thought of Simeon and his long wait in the temple. He was a devout man, guided by the Holy Spirit, and he was waiting for the coming of the Messiah as foretold in the Scriptures. The Spirit had given him confirmation that he would not die until he had witnessed the birth of the Christ child. It was no accident that he happened to be in the temple when Mary and Joseph brought Jesus. He had come in obedience to the leading of the Spirit, as he had many times before. He came looking and expecting. This time, he was rewarded for his patience and his obedience. The Messiah had been born. Now Simeon could die in peace. He had surrendered to God's time. He had held the Christ child in his arms!

Prayer: Lord, give us patience to follow Your timing and an active expectancy to keep us moving. Amen.

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Ivie Bozeman <>
Thomasville, Georgia, USA

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