And there was also a prophetess, Anna, the daughter of Phanuel, of the tribe of Asher.She was very old, having lived with her husband seven years from her maidenhood, And as a widow even for eighty-four years. She did not go out from the temple enclosure, but was worshiping night and day with fasting and prayer. And she too came up at that same hour, and she returned thanks to God and talked of [Jesus] to all who were looking for the redemption (deliverance) of Jerusalem. Luke 2: 36-38 AMP
"The Prophetess Anna," by Rembrandt
Mary and Joseph took Jesus to Jerusalem after their purification, and they presented him before the Lord. At this time, Simeon and Anna come on the scene. These two divine appointments, although obscure in their brief mention, were by no means insignificant!
Just as Simeon was prophesying that the child in his arms was God’s salvation, up walked Anna.
We are told much about Anna’s history. She is a prophetess, the daughter of Phanuel, and from the tribe of Asher. Anna’s name means “gracious” and her father’s name means “face of God.” Included in the blessings spoken over the tribe of Asher was the promise, “as your day, so shall your strength, your rest and security, be.” Deuteronomy 33: 24-25 AMP. Certainly, this applied to Anna, a widow of 84 years!
Although none of her prophetic words are recorded, imagine the amazing promises she may have proclaimed and rejoiced over in that moment.
Anna was a worshiper. In fact, that is who we are told she was even before we’re told she was a woman of fasting and prayer. In the face of significant losses early in life, she chose to enthrone the Lord on her praises. Anna did not allow her losses to dictate the course of her life. Rather, she chose to have a grateful heart, an undivided heart, and the Lord rewarded her and opened her eyes to behold Emmanuel, God with us!
Surely the decades she spent worshiping, night and day, with fasting and prayer had developed her deep love for God and an intimacy she enjoyed throughout her life. Worship catches the heart of God; it draws Him near, and changes the atmosphere around us.
Anna spoke of Jesus "to all them in Jerusalem that were looking for redemption." Here He is! All your expectations and joy are to be found in this Baby! He is Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace!
May you, like Anna, worship Him this Christmas season. For He alone is worthy!
by Debra Neybert, Training Specialist
Web Design and Development by Extend Web Services