“A prophetess, Anna. . .was a widow until she was eighty-four. She never left the temple but worshiped night and day” – Luke 2:36-37
I’ve been preparing for a series of Advent sermons, and one of those will be on Anna, the prophet who saw the child Jesus at His dedication in the Temple. All day this one particular phrase has bothered me– “She never left the temple.”
Here’s a woman who has been a widow for more years than I’ve been alive, yet she never left the temple. She never fell away or became faithless. She could have given up on God because she was a widow after only seven years of marriage, perhaps feeling neglected by God and society. She could have turned her back on her religion because life wasn’t turning out as she hoped. She could have shouted, “It MUST be someone’s fault. I’ll blame it on God! That’ll teach Him.” But she didn’t. She chose never to leave the temple.
In the Greek language this literally means, “She kept on not leaving.” She wasn’t too lazy to head for the door; she intentionally and actively engaged in not leaving the presence of God. Continue Reading