Simeon was waiting for the coming Messiah. His eagerness for "that day" to arrive was no less intense than a 10 year old boy or girl waiting for Christmas Day to finally arrive. Even we adults anticipate that blessed day, perhaps because we remember the excitement we felt when we were kids. We enjoy watching our younger family members finally getting to see "what's under the tree." Waiting is part of the season.
A practical thought here is for all of you who run from store to store trying to get the best bargain, or just finding a store that has what you're looking for. (Some of us remember the "mad dash" people were making years ago for the Cabbage Patch dolls that were so popular but so hard to find!) You find yourself doing a lot of waiting. Waiting in traffic to get to the store; waiting in the parking lot for a space to open up; waiting to get into the store behind the long line of people heading right where you're going! Waiting again in line to check out. And then waiting to get home. What do you do when you're waiting?
Some of us are learning that patience is part of our Christian character and it often needs to be improved upon! Many times we get impatient and complain in our hearts that we've been made to wait. "Doesn't God know I'm in a hurry and I've got so much to do? Why doesn't He clear things out of my way so I can fulfill my plans?" Ever think that in the process of waiting God is accomplishing His plan? Ever think to pray for the people in the cars around you when you're stuck in traffic? Ever pray for the people in the same long line you're in? How about praying for the poor store clerk who has to put up with the negative attitudes of various shoppers. You see, sometimes waiting is not really a disappointment. It may very well be "His appointment" for you to pray and even speak to those around you. Look for ways to ease the tension in a long line. Compliment someone in line. Speak of how you're blessed with a family that's "home for the holidays." Make sure you thank the store clerk for their efforts to be pleasan with the not-so-pleasant-shoppers.
Most of all, wait on the Lord when you're waiting in line. Like a good waitor or waitress, be ready for your Master's instructions and use you "waiting time" as "witnessing time." No time is wasted when it's spent waiting on the Lord.