Tradition says that it was on this day that Simeon, the son of Jacob and Leah was born:
“Then she conceived again and bore a son, and said, ‘Because the Lord has heard that I am unloved, He has therefore given me this son also.’ And she called his name Simeon.” (Genesis 29:33)
The name Simeon, or Shimon, comes from the Hebrew word shama (“to hear”) because she said, “the Lord has heard me.” It’s interesting that this son is linked to the idea of Leah being unloved. It’s interesting because there is not a lot recorded about Simeon, himself. We do know that he had a quick temper as evidenced by the incident involving his sister Dinah. We know that he was the one Joseph kept incarcerated in Egypt, compelling his brothers to return, bringing their younger brother, Benjamin, with them. This hints that Simeon may have played a significant role in Joseph being sold into slavery. We also know that the tribe of Simeon was more or less dispersed throughout the territory of Judah, effectively negating any specific area designated specifically to the tribe of Simeon. So when compared to some of the other tribes, Simeon seems to be “unloved.”
The reality is, however insignificant Simeon or his family may have been considered to be, the entire family of Israel cannot be complete without him. Without Simeon, the Messiah’s purpose for Israel cannot come into fruition. Yet, we know that it will be fulfilled because Scripture records that, in the end of days, there are as many from the tribe of Simeon that are sealed by God as any other tribe. The point is this: those who are considered to be the least significant are, nevertheless, critical to the Creator’s overall plan.
Consider the Hebrew letter י yud, the smallest of all Hebrew letters and, seemingly, the least significant. Yet Messiah said that not one jot (the equivalent of the Hebrew yud) in Scripture would be ignored or omitted until everything God had purposed was fulfilled. The point is, things that seem to be insignificant, unimportant or cast away are critical to the Creator’s purpose and plan, including you and me.
Most people have a hard time thinking that they play an important role in the Father’s plan. Many times we’re tempted to think that we’re just extras in a play that’s centered around a few select and notable cast members. But to believe that would suggest that we’re just an accident; a notion that all believers should reject. Each of us has come into the Kingdom for such a time as this. Each of us play a role in our Father’s plan, whatever that may be. Furthermore, the Father’s desire is that we each take our proper place that we may play our role in His plan. It is necessary that we do so that everything God has intended for us as individuals, families, communities and the Body at large, can come to fruition.
So if you’re feeling unloved, unimportant, insignificant or forgotten, remember Simeon. He seems to be that kind of a person as well and, yet at the end of days, he stands just as tall as all the other tribes. So shall it be with each of us if we are faithful to allow the Father to work through us and in us.