December 07, 2015

Waiting for Freedom

Luke 2:36-40

[Anna] gave thanks to God and spoke about the child to all who were looking forward to the redemption of Jerusalem.

—  Luke 2:38

The temple must have been busy the day Mary and Joseph brought Jesus there. They kept bumping into people who were waiting. One of these was a woman named Anna. Anna was devoted to God. She worshiped day and night, fasting and praying. She was one of a group of people who were looking forward to the redemption of Jerusalem.

Redemption can be understood as paying a price to set someone or something free. The people Anna spoke to might have been looking forward to redemption because the holy city was under the control of Rome and they wanted political freedom. In the books of the New Testament, however, we discover that others were also longing to be free. They were yearning for freedom from religious customs that burdened them, from sicknesses that plagued them, from spirits that oppressed them, and from the sin that condemned them.

Though we value our freedom, we often find ourselves trapped. If not in prison, we might be trapped by debt, scorn, or circumstance. Sometimes this is because of something we have done. Sometimes it’s a result of what others have done to us. Either way, we long for redemption.

In Jesus, Anna saw what she was waiting for: the One who could pay the price and set her free.

Almighty God who gives freedom to the oppressed and recovery of sight to the blind, open our eyes, that we might see your redemption in Jesus. Amen.

About the author — Norman Visser

Norman Visser has served as a pastor of churches in Ontario, Nova Scotia, and South Dakota. He states that while he is “not known for waiting patiently,” he is “working on it.” Norman and his wife, Marcia, have three children.

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