LHM Advent Devotion – December 30, 2014 “The Widow of Christmas”

 

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Advent Devotions from Lutheran Hour Ministries

By Reverend Wayne Palmer

Use these devotions in your newsletter and bulletin!  Used by permission; all rights reserved by the Int’l LLL (LHM). 

“The Widow of Christmas”

December 30, 2014

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Read Luke 3:36-38.
Coming up at that very hour she began to give thanks to God and to speak of Him to all who were waiting for the redemption of Jerusalem. Luke 2:38

We have reached the sixth day of Christmas, and my wise men are half way there. Today we will take one last look at Jesus’ presentation at the temple. Now that Simeon has completed his words Anna steps forward. Luke tells us she is an extremely old woman. She has lived 84 years, but it is unclear whether Luke means she’s 84 years old, or if she’s lived 84 years since she became a widow. (If that’s the case, she is well over 100 years old!) Either way, she spends all her time in the courtyards of the temple, fasting and praying.

At the very hour Simeon is speaking, Anna comes up to Mary, Joseph, and Jesus, thanks God for His Son, and begins to speak of Jesus to all those who have been waiting for the Christ. And undoubtedly she will keep speaking about Him until the Lord brings her home.

The Lord’s choice to include Anna among those who saw the young child Jesus is fascinating. Here is an elderly woman who is widowed. Like many elderly widowed men and women of faith, she could easily have asked, “Why am I still here? What is left for me to do?” Anna shows us. We are never too old to share the news about Jesus, never too old to make a lasting impact in our world.

In the later years of our life we can make a difference, even if we are weak, sick, or confined to a bed in a nursing home. And as is true all through your life, your attitude and your behavior will make all the difference. If you are kind and grateful to those who help you, then your words will carry great weight with those who attend and care for you. But if you are bitter, short-tempered, impatient, and crabby, your words — and your faith — will mean very little to them.

God has chosen each of us. He has washed away our sins in Jesus’ blood through Baptism, made us part of His family of faith, and gathered us together to celebrate His great salvation. Each of us finds ourselves at different points along our journey to our heavenly home, surrounded with a unique circle of friends and acquaintances. Like Anna, may God guide us to joyfully share the story of Jesus with everyone we meet along the way.

THE PRAYER: Heavenly Father, thank You for choosing me among the multitudes who have heard of Your Son and put their faith in Him. Strengthen me to continue sharing His Name that many more may come to a saving faith by Your Holy Spirit. I pray this in Jesus’ Name. Amen.

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