How often do we search for Jesus in the crowd, yet never see Him? My great nieces were given a hidden object book similar to the Where’s Waldo series. They had to find Jesus in the crowds of people going through everyday first century activities. It wasn’t an easy task. You really had to hunt for Him.
At the time Jesus was born, the prophets had been silent for centuries. Yet, the prayer of a Messiah coming to deliver them from Roman cruelty and occupation was on many Hebrews’ lips. Dreams and visions began to happen. A glimmer of hope flickered, especially after witnessing that unusually bright start gleaming over them and hearing tales from shepherds. All over Jerusalem there must have been a buzz.
Yet, eight days later when Mary and Joseph took Jesus to be circumcised, only two people in the crowd recognized this small child as the Promised One – Anna the prophetess who had been widowed at a young age and lived there to serve in the temple for most of her adult life (similar to a nun), and an old man named Simeon who was told he would not die before he saw the Messiah.
As you go about your daily activities, can you find Jesus? He may not be in plain sight, or He may be right there near you, but in your busy-ness you miss Him. Often times we feel when we can’t find God, He is the one who has left us. Just the opposite is true. Perhaps you prayed for His presence this morning before you started your day, then you started your day and on came the blindersso you could focus on getting it all done. Perhaps He is right in front of you, but you can’t see Him through the fog of confusion, chaos or grief. Maybe all is going well, and you see no need to seek Him out. Or, could it be He has stepped aside to purposely get your attention so you again focus on mostly Him?
Maybe you are already back to work and routine, and so you are feeling the lull between the ending whirl of the holidays and before New Year’s Eve gins up (no pun intended). In these 12 Days of Christmas until Jan 6th, where will you look for the baby Jesus now that the presents are unwrapped, the guests gone and the dishes piled in the sink are diminishing?
The Messiah is still here. Seek Him. Wise men did. So did an old man and a widow who never lost faith.