For my eyes have seen your salvation, Which you have prepared before the face of all people; A light to lighten the Gentiles, and the glory of your people Israel. (Luke 2:30-32)
Simeon had received a promise from God. He would not die until he saw his salvation! God kept his word! When Jesus was brought to the temple and upon receiving him and blessing him, Simeon turned to Mary and told her "this child is set for the fall and rising again of many in Israel; and for a sign which shall be spoken against; Yes, a sword shall pierce through your own soul also, that the thoughts of many hearts may be revealed."
Although we know very little about Christ's life as a child, being a mother or a father would allow you to "presume" a few things. I think of my kids. I think of their "firsts" - rolling over, sitting up, standing, crawling... I think of them learning to walk, stumbling and falling. I think of their little person giggle, the way they spoke certain words, the way they described different things, the first time they called me "Mommy". I think of their first day of school, how excited we both were (I was not one of those parents who cried). I think of their birthday parties, their favorite games, the sports they played, the friends they made. I think of the "private" talks as they got older, the times spent in the car together. I think of vacations. I also think of the times they were sick, when I would hold their head over the toilet, putting bandaids on their "boo-boo's". I think of their high school graduations, their chosen career path, their college days. I think of my son's wedding. I think of them on their own, perhaps someday raising their own children. Then I think of Mary. Jesus was her child, her first born son! Imagine knowing that that precious child you held in your arms would die for all mankind. Imagine the panic that set in when she and Joseph realized that Jesus was not with them when returning from Jerusalem. Imagine the day that he left home to begin his teaching. Imagine what she felt when he was arrested and condemned to die. Imagine watching your precious child nailed to a cross. Imagine that precious child being laid dead in your arms.
Jesus was born, lived a life and died. The joy comes from what followed - the resurrection! Without his birth, there would be no salvation! Without the life he led, there would be no "model" to imitate! Without his death, there would no hope! In all the world there has not been one as innocent or one as sacred as "her little child". God not only gave Mary a gift that first Christmas morning, he gave a gift to all of us ~ he gave us his son. Our redemption lay in Mary's arms. God fulfilled the promise to all people that day - the promise of Savior.
Whatever you are facing this Christmas season, whatever burdens you bear, whatever hardships you face remember this: It took a miracle for Christ to be born. Your salvation was guaranteed through that miracle. If it took faith in a miracle to get you to where you are, what makes you think that same "faith" is not standing beside you? God's love for us is so great, so unending, and so powerful - who are we to NOT believe he will continue to watch over us until we meet him? Remember - YOU are still his little child!