God Keeps His Promises

Stephanie Mygrant

Anna

In Luke 2:36-38, we meet a woman named Anna.

From these three verses, we don’t learn everything there is to know about her life, but here are five things that I learned just from reading the first two verses in this passage:

● Her profession - Prophetess
● Her name/lineage - Anna, daughter of Phanuel, of the tribe of Asher.
● Her age - 84 years old (or young, if you prefer to think of it that way).
● Her marital status - WIDOW.
● Her day (and night) job - Serving in the temple by fasting and praying.

Now, the fact that Anna was a prophetess is a pretty big deal, considering that I’ve only ever heard about men being prophets, but that’s not what I want you to take away from reading this blog.

I want you to think about the true reason why Anna is an important person in scripture, and it’s not because of her title.

So, let’s start by talking about the meaning of the name Anna. Anna means “full of grace or favor.” We know that Anna was married at a young age, and then she lived as a widow—never remarrying. The text doesn’t really make it clear when she became a widow, but either way you look at it—whether she was very young when she lost her husband or whether she loved her husband for the majority of her life and then lost him—she had good reason to be angry about her circumstances in life.

How would it make you feel if you were her and every time you heard someone speak your name, you were reminded that you’re full of grace and favor, yet that’s what happened in your life.

Friends, Anna lived up to her name. She didn’t mope around; she didn’t search out a new husband to give her a better life; she didn’t turn away from the Lord because of the hard life He had given her. She believed that she was favored by God and moved her whole life to the temple to SERVE GOD!

Anna was a faithful servant, fully believing that God would fulfill His promises, and she was blessed by meeting Jesus, the Messiah, in the flesh! Luke 2:38 tells how she was a witness in the temple where Mary and Joseph brought Jesus when Simeon was moved by the Holy Spirit to come meet and prophesy about Him.

Can you relate to Anna? I can.

For my husband and me, this year has been one for the books. On May 22nd, we found out that I was seven weeks pregnant. We had been looking forward to having children, but we had not really been “trying.” We were waiting on God’s timing, allowing whatever was going to happen to happen. Of course, when we found out, we were excited and looking forward to this new phase of our lives—who wouldn’t be?

Just a few weeks later, I went to the doctor for a normal check-up, and she could not hear the baby’s heartbeat. My child had passed away only 10 weeks along in my pregnancy.

Of course, this is not what anyone ever wants to hear when they go into the doctor for a normal check-up during what is supposed to be one of the happiest times in life. Cody and I were heartbroken, and it was very hard telling our friends and family the news. But, I have always believed that EVERYTHING happens for a reason, and this was no different.

Romans 8:28 says, in all things God works for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to his purpose. In ALL things—both the good and the bad.

Throughout the experience of early pregnancy loss, I clung to this verse. I truly believe it with all my heart. God has given us a PROMISE that everything that happens works for our good—even the loss of a child, or in Anna’s case, the loss of her husband.

A couple weeks after we found out the news, I went to lunch with Lisa Frosch and her husband, Tim. I remember telling her that I was ok, and I was trusting that God knows what He’s doing; I’ll never forget what she told me. She said that she had come to lunch to minister to me during this hard thing that I was going through, but that I ended up ministering to her because of my attitude. But friends, it wasn’t my attitude—it was GOD! Lisa mentioned Philippians 4:7 and told me that God had given me peace that surpasses understanding, and she was right!

In October this year, we found out that I was pregnant again! But, that’s not even the best part. When I finally made it to the doctor to check out how things were going (assuming that I was only a few weeks along), I found out that I was already well into the second trimester of this pregnancy—about 17 weeks. Not only did that mean that we were able to conceive again just TWO weeks after losing our first child, but it also meant that I was already passed the ‘danger zone’ of early pregnancy loss.

Friends, God is good and faithful, and He keeps ALL of His promises. I trusted Him, and He gave me peace. He gave me a testimony to share which destroys the power of the enemy.

As we continue in this year’s advent season, take some time to reflect on your own life story. Ask God to reveal ways you can relate to Anna, and how you can remind yourself that He is faithful whenever you find yourself in the midst of a crisis.

Wait on Him. Be patient. Continue to serve Him. God will keep His promises.

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