There have been a few times in my life when I have been given a direct rhema from the Lord.
Once was when I was a teenager, asking God what my calling was. That day He sent me a note.
Another was at Bible School, when I was seeking to further define my calling. He met me that night in a dream. One thing I had always wondered was what I would say to Jesus if I saw Him in person. That night I found that the first words from my mouth were, “Abba. Oh, my Abba.” In the dream He was on His way to the cross and when I cried over His wounds and what I knew was to come, He turned me gently toward a hillside. There in the shadow of the cross, dozens of children were playing—oblivious to the horror happening above them. “I am going to make all things new,” He told me. “You go and teach them to see.”
One time, after I was married and was shaking in fear over the prospect of infertility being the “thorn” in my side, never to be removed—the Lord met me on my living room floor. I was crying uncontrollably, all alone and God said, “Go see Tish.” I remember how crazy loud the voice sounded and how strange the command seemed. I drove to her house, found her out in the pottery shop, and tripped and struggled through my tale of fears. I don’t even remember what she said, but looking back I can see how the enemy was working hard to isolate me—and God’s rhema began the steps back into community. His community.
Today I was reading the story of Simeon. Many people assume he was an old man, but nowhere in Scripture (that I’ve found) does it say this. Instead, what it does say is that he was “devout” and “righteous” and was waiting for the consolation of Israel. Oh, and the “Holy Spirit was upon him.”
The Holy Spirit was upon him.
I love that. You know why? Because I have access to that Holy Spirit. Me. The one who is not always devout and whose righteousness is rather faulty and who gets a little distracted with everyday life and doesn’t always remember the final consolation of Israel is coming.
Even with all of that—I have access to the same Holy Spirit that rested on Simeon. The Holy Spirit that spoke to him. “You will not die,” he was told, “until you have seen the Lord’s Christ.”
Oh, what glory.
I wonder what prompted God to make that promise to Simeon. Did he pound on the doors of heaven, day in and day out? Obviously his heart was open and willing for the Holy Spirit. Obviously he loved the Lord with everything.
But regardless of God’s reason for promising this to Simeon, I am also struck by what God did for me.
You see, I was not born until the world had seen the Christ.
And sometimes I forget what a miracle—what grace—that really is.
I know a world with a Savior. Oh, beautiful, beautiful grace.
This Holy Spirit that once only came upon a very few, is available in my life—even though I am so little and so unworthy. I get to hear and see the Messiah, as Simeon did, all those years ago. How blessed am I among women.
When I read Simeon’s prayer, something shifts in my heart. I can pray this. For real.
“Lord, now you are letting your servant depart in peace,
according to your word;
for my eyes have seen your salvation
that you have prepared in the presence of all peoples,
a light for revelation to the Gentiles,
and for glory to your people Israel.”
Can you, friend? Can you say with Simeon, “For my eyes have seen your salvation, which you have prepared in the sight of all people…”?
Oh, how I pray you can. If not– look to Him. For through Him all things are being made new.