This coming weekend, the college basketball tournament begins. Since the cancellation of last years tournament, schools/athletes/coaches/fans (including my two daughters) have been anticipating March Madness. As several events and activities have been canceled over the last year, people have slowly anticipated the the opportunities to once again participate.

The spring season brings with it warmer temperatures, more daylight hours, and a variety of colors we haven’t seen since fall. There is anticipation for some people for all of these elements of spring and more. One of my children is simply looking forward to the tulips budding.

Anticipation is expecting something to occur or being hopeful. Looking forward to someone arriving or something happening with excitement are others ways to define anticipation.

There are several anticipation images/examples in the context of our faith in Christ. On Easter we anticipate celebrating a risen Savior. Followers of Christ anticipate Jesus’ return one day. The promise of eternal life. This list is not a complete one. The following scripture text is the story of Simeon seeing the eight day old Jesus.

“Now there was a man in Jerusalem called Simeon, who was righteous and devout. He was waiting for the consolation of Israel, and the Holy Spirit was on him. It had been revealed to him by the Holy Spirit that he would not die before he had seen the Lord’s Messiah. Moved by the Spirit, he went into the temple courts. When the parents brought in the child Jesus to do for him what the custom of the Law required, Simeon took him in his arms and praised God, saying: “Sovereign Lord, as you have promised, you may now dismiss your servant in peace. For my eyes have seen your salvation, which you have prepared in the sight of all nations: a light for revelation to the Gentiles, and the glory of your people Israel.”–Luke 2:25-32

Simeon had anticipated this day and the text records his excitement. He had been waiting with hope and expectation to see the Messiah!

What are you anticipating? Perhaps the end of the semester or a new job/internship this summer are opportunities you are looking forward to with anticipation. In regard to our relationship with God through Jesus Christ, what are we anticipating? What new and exciting opportunity to grow in our faith is God preparing for us? May we be encouraged and challenged to anticipate God at work in and through us to serve and change the world!

“However, as it is written: “What no eye has seen, what no ear has heard,
and what no human mind has conceived” the things God has prepared for those who love him.”
–1st Corinthians 2:9

“Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see.”–Hebrews 11:1

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