When everything is going perfectly or when something is presented to us that’s at the top of our wish list, we’re often suspicious and think it’s too good to be true. An angel tells a temple priest that his very old, barren wife Elizabeth would have a son named John. And as if that wasn’t good news enough, the angel also tells him that this blessed child would grow up to do great things as God’s servant and lead many to God. This news severely challenged Zechariah’s faith. His doubt was obvious.
God, you know my heart’s desires. Sometimes I’m afraid to entrust them to you. Help me embrace what you are doing in my life and not doubt your goodness.
An angel brings Zechariah good news, but Zechariah struggles to receive it.
Zechariah’s response echoes Abraham and Sarah’s plight (highlighted in yesterday’s reading): “How shall I know this? For I am an old man, and my wife is advanced in years” (v. 18 ESV). Zechariah could not believe what he was hearing, and the angel rendered him mute. At John’s birth, Zechariah sang a different tune—one filled with praise to God for his faithfulness, mercy, and kindness (See Luke 1:67-79).
What does your ‘song’ sound like? Does it express doubt or confidence in God’s promises? Ask God to give you the kind of faith that will not waver but hold firmly, especially when you face apparent impossibilities.