Updated: Sep 2
"And coming in that instance she gave thanks to the Lord, and spoke of Him to all those who looked for redemption in Jerusalem." Luke 2:38
There was once a girl named Anna, who was raised by her Father, Phanuel. He gave her in marriage to a man who only lived seven years and left her a widow for the rest of her life.
She devoted her life to God by becoming a resident staff member at the temple in Jerusalem. She was named a prophetess but no one knows why. Many wondered if it was her husband that might have been a prophet or because she spent her time in worship and praise, bearing testimony of foretelling future events through divine inspiration.
She studied the scripture and spent her days and nights in prayer. Being a descendant of the tribe of Asher, she had been taught to study the scriptures. Anna looked for the Messiah because of the prophets foretelling through Isaiah (Isa. 9:6) and Micah (Mic. 5:2).
She was there...in the temple when Mary and Joseph brought the one month old baby Jesus to be dedicated (Luke 2:22). Can you imagine being in that place...at that time? I wonder her thoughts and feelings as she witnessed this couple walking in holding the Lord.
Then she watches as a man named Simeon, moved by the Spirit, ask to take the Lord in his arms and pray over Him (Luke 2:27,28). That is when she knew this was the Messiah, "the Lord's Christ" (Luke 2:26). Anna was eighty four years young when this took place. I imagine the love and support she gave to young Mary, and the comfort she provided them knowing the Word of God was being revealed at that divine moment.
Luke's description of Anna made me stop and take notice of her character and qualities as a Christian woman. This is what I took from his testimony of her:
~Her lifetime of prayer and fasting caused her speech to be worth hearing.
~She was well-respected and held in high regard because of her godly wisdom.
~Her words were taken to heart as she spoke of God's gift of redemption to all.
Girls, we should strive to live sober, righteous, and godly lives as we look for the day of our Lord's return. We need to be ready to give witness of Him through our actions, deeds and speech, not making anyone stumble (Mark 9:42). He will come in all His glory and we should long to hear Him say, "Well done my good and faithful servant" (Matt. 25:21).
I wonder if Anna knew she would somehow be a part of the Christmas story...I bet she did.
I love you & He loves you more!
Lord, May we devote our lives more to You. May we seek You in Your Word and share what You place in our hearts to the world around us. Help us to be Your witness. May we be the hands and feet of Jesus. Amen.