trusting in the Lord

“Blessed be the Lord God of Israel,
for he has looked favorably on his people and redeemed them.”
(Luke 1:68)

When an angel of the Lord appeared to Zechariah to tell him that his wife, Elizabeth, would bear a son, Zechariah was skeptical.  Elizabeth was “advanced in years” and until this time she had been unable to conceive a child.  Zechariah didn’t jump for joy when he heard the good news.  He didn’t even buy it right away.  The penalty for this disbelief?  He was struck silent.  Speechless.  Maybe God is trying to tell us something about the value of keeping our mouth shut when we try to steal God’s glory.

By the time Elizabeth had given birth to a healthy son (John the Baptist), Zechariah had come around.  When the next test of faith came he passed with flying colors – and God opened his mouth and loosed his tongue.  The first words out of his mouth were these:

“Blessed be the Lord God of Israel,
for he has looked favorably on his people and redeemed them.”

To be redeemed is to know the saving love of God; love that restores broken hearts and broken spirits to wholeness.  To be redeemed is to know that God has made right something that human sinfulness made wrong.  To be redeemed is to know that we are washed clean of sin; the burden we have been carrying has been lifted, and we are able – with Zechariah – to sing the praises of God.

It’s not unusual to feel skeptical about God’s promises.  It’s not abnormal for our trust in God to falter from time to time.  But the Holy One desires to bring us closer and closer to His kingdom and His mercy so he will seek us out.

You never fail us, O God.  You never fail to astonish us, to perplex us, to lead us to wonder, to cause us to trust in You.  Seek us out, when we falter.  Draw us near when we wander.  And open our hearts and our mouths that we might proclaim your glory to those who need to hear.  Amen.

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