“We Need God’s Grace and Our Loving Obedience to Grow in Hope for Christ’s Return 我們需要神的恩典和自己鍾愛的聽從，在盼望基督的再來裡成長“（Luke 路加福音2:36-40）
There was also a prophet, Anna, the daughter of Penuel, of the tribe of Asher. She was very old; she had lived with her husband seven years after her marriage, and then was a widow until she was eighty-four. She never left the temple but worshipped night and day, fasting and praying. Coming up to them at that very moment, she gave thanks to God and spoke about the child to all who were looking forward to the redemption of Jerusalem. When Joseph and Mary had done everything required by the Law of the Lord, they returned to Galilee to their own town of Nazareth. And the child grew and became strong; he was filled with wisdom, and the grace of God was on him.
Anna, a widow who knew pain and loss but had not become bitter living in the temple and serving God with total devotion after seven years of marriage until she was eighty-four, was considered to be a prophet in the way that she brought forth specific words about Jesus. Perhaps it was because she was a woman of worship and prayer that she had never lost hope demonstrating her close walk with God by her love for Jesus and her desire to tell others about Jesus. Even as a child brought up by his devout, obedient parents, Jesus grew and developed like other children but being perfectly obedient to God, God’s goodness, favour and wisdom were evident in His life.
Prayer: Gracious and Loving Father, thank you for Luke’s simple life account of Anna as a concluding episode of infant Jesus to hint the fact that Jesus’ childhood was as normal as that of an ordinary Jewish child where God’s grace and people’s loving obedience to Him are bare necessities for life-long walking with Him. May you grant us the faith to accept that there is not anything we need to know except what we are told by the Holy Spirit in the Word. Amen.