This year my church selected the theme of waiting for Advent. It wasn’t what I normally associate with Christmas. But there is a lot of waiting that goes on at Christmas – waiting for all the greetings from friends, waiting to see family, waiting to see what’s wrapped under the tree. Luke 2:25 says, “Simeon was just and devout, waiting for the Consolation of Israel, and the Holy Sprit was upon him.” Simeon was praying a heartbeat prayer. His prayer was for Israel to be consoled. He recognized the need, articulated it in prayer, and was waiting for the answer. Asking God to console all of Israel is a big ask. And after the ask, Simeon didn’t write off the lack of any change or difference. He was actively looking for and expecting an answer. He didn’t know that it would come in the form of a little boy visiting the temple. But Simeon’s spirit saw the boy and felt the shift in his spirit. He somehow knew this was not an ordinary boy. He recognized the nudge of the Holy Spirit which was upon him. Seeing the answer in a person brought him peace, long before the world had any idea of who Jesus was or His significance. Simeon still didn’t know how this boy would be the answer. His spirit was attuned in active waiting, such that he knew Jesus was the answer to his prayer for Israel. His peace was so deep that he was ready to depart life in peace.
How many big prayer requests have I asked of God? One request I have is that revival would come to America. I’d like to see people know God as a loving and just God. I’d like to see America honor His statutes. I’d like to see people have a healthy fear of God. And so, I wait and pray.
It takes time to see the results of big prayer requests. We ask and leave many things in God’s hands, believing that He is at work. We ask knowing that He hears our prayers. We ask, trusting that He is at work on it. I now add to the request that I would recognize the beginning signs of change and shift. “Show me a sign for good…because You, O Lord, have helped me and comforted me.” Psalm 86:17. I believe this is a time to ask for big things of God. Nothing is too difficult for God.