“Now there was a man in Jerusalem, whose name was Simeon, and this man was righteous and devout, waiting for the consolation of Israel, and the Holy Spirit was upon him. And it had been revealed to him by the Holy Spirit that he would not see death before he had seen the Lord’s Christ.” (Luke 2:25-26, ESV)
When we read about Christmas we read about the census that the Emperor Augustus commanded that brought about the birth of Jesus in the small town of Bethlehem. Augustus gave no thought to the thousands of people who would have their lives disrupted as they were forced to jump to do his bidding. Yet while the Emperor, his generals and various puppet kings and princes were ruling over a huge chunk of the civilized world and exercising authority and power over millions, in one small corner of the Empire an event took place which would bring down that mighty empire with the good news of God’s love and mercy to all the world.
The great leaders who thought they were in control played only a peripheral role. It was a few faithful righteous ones at lower level of society who were the main participants in this monumental event including Simeon and Anna. Neither possessed any great talents, prestige, political power, celebrity or fame. Yet God chose them to proclaim His word.
The Lord God always does this. He calls and chooses the least likely ones to bless and use as His servants. The world rejects His way because it is an affront to man’s pride. The world thinks that those who should be blessed are the ones who do great deeds, have talent, strength, beauty, political power and self-confidence. But God’s way demands the opposite: man must admit that he is powerless, unattractive, unable to accomplish anything. God’s way means total self-surrender to Him, utter dependence on His strength and wisdom. God’s way demands deep humility, love for those who hate you, mercy and grace for those who mistreat you.