Anna iii #adventbookclub

Luke 2:36-38 (CEV)

Anna Speaks about the Child Jesus

36 The prophet Anna was also there in the temple. She was the daughter of Phanuel from the tribe of Asher, and she was very old. In her youth she had been married for seven years, but her husband died. 37 And now she was eighty-four years old. Night and day she served God in the temple by praying and often going without eating.

38 At that time Anna came in and praised God. She spoke about the child Jesus to everyone who hoped for Jerusalem to be set free. 

Sorry carried away by Anna and all it means for us, but wanted to pick up this point.  On page 12, Stephen Cottrell uses the phrase,

My hurts and regrets are still there.  But now they are known and illuminated, integrated and healed

This, imho, is the wonder and the power of the gospel.  God doesn’t come with a magic wand and remove the difficulties and the past.  But he shines a light, his light, onto it.  It is no longer something hidden, something to trip us up, something to pressure us.  It is something that he is present in, alongside us.  In “allowing ourselves to be found” (also Stephen’s phrase) we can be changed.

I’ve writtern about this before, from my personal experience, both in the context of Lent here and here if you want to read them.

The crux of the matter is, that facing up to the reality is always better than living in fear that one day it will turn around and bite you. 

Lord I bring to you
my struggle,
my pain,
my despair,
my anger,
my frustration.

It sit with it
with you.
And I wait
as your unfailing love
and mercy continue
and help me to live

 

Join us reading Walking Backwards to Christmas by Stephen Cottrell from SPCK Publishing this advent.  Be part of #adventbookclub, share your thoughts here, on your own blog (and let us know we’ll link to it), on Twitter using #adventbookclub or on the Adventbookclub Facebook page

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