By the Spirit

**Thank all of you for your patience as I have been spending much time completing the editing process on a writing project to be in print in the near future.

“So he came by the Spirit into the temple…”  — Luke 2:27

I recently read a humorous story about a backwoodsman in Mississippi who was given a chain saw and asked to go and cut wood. The country boy had never seen or heard of a chain saw but promptly set about cutting wood.

After several hours, the man who gave the saw, returned to find that only a small amount of wood had been cut. When he questioned the country boy’s productivity, the Mississippian invited him to try to do better.

The first fellow took the saw from the country boy, pulled the start cord and revved the engine. The country boy responded to the engine noise by asking, “What was that?” He had not benefited from the power of the saw!

Simeon was in the temple of God by the leadership of the Holy Spirit. The most monumental event in history had just taken place. God became a man…a baby.

Essentially, the whole world had missed this moment. Oh, there were a few shepherds, some wise men, a worried king and an amazed young couple who knew what was going on. But for the most part, the event had gone unnoticed.

The religious leaders who labored in the temple of God were oblivious to the birth of the Messiah. Painful routine and repetition drove them on in their activities. It was just another day.

But when the Holy Spirit is present in the life of a person, dreams can come true. Simeon had excitedly anticipated the coming Consolation of Israel — the Messiah. God had revealed to him, possibly in a dream, that he would not taste death until this had happened.

Led by the Spirit, Simeon found himself in the place where this wonderful vision became a reality. The Holy Spirit was the difference between him and an unknowing world. The Holy Spirit distinguished between a life of routine and a life of rejoicing.

We live in a generation of “professors of faith” who, by their attitudes and actions are saying, “I don’t need the Holy Spirit.” An independent, self-sufficient attitude pervades the modern Church. We are fulfilling the description of the last days Church as seen in Revelation 3:17, “Because you say, ‘I am rich, have become wealthy, and have need of nothing’ — and do not know that you are wretched, miserable, poor, blind and naked.”

Simeon’s blessing came as a result of his yielded life…a life yielded to the Holy Spirit. He was the first to celebrate Christmas in the temple. He celebrated Christmas alone…until Anna.

I believe we need a fresh infusion of dependence in the Church. We need a fresh touch and filling of the Holy Spirit. I don’t want to miss the Messiah this Christmas. Do you?


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Filed under Bible Devotions, Christian Devotions, Daily Devotions

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