Prayer: Come, Holy Spirit. Teach me to believe in God’s word to me.
Imagination: (Picture the Angel appearing to Zechariah).
In these early stories, Luke speaks of two couples, Zechariah with Elizabeth and Joseph with Mary. Zechariah fails this test of faith. His lack of belief is later reversed when he names the child, John.
Gospel Text: (Read slowly, possibly aloud.)
In the days of King Herod, there was a priest named Zechariah. His wife’s name was Elizabeth. Both were just before God, walking blamelessly in all his commandments and laws. They had no son, because Elizabeth was barren and they were well advanced in years.
According to the custom of the priestly office, it was Zechariah’s turn to offer incense. As he went into the temple of the Lord, an angel appeared to Zechariah. Upon seeing him, Zechariah was troubled and fear came upon him. The angel said, “Zechariah, fear not. Your prayer is heard. Your wife Elizabeth shall conceive a son, and you will call him John”.
Zechariah answered, “How am I to know this? I and my wife are advanced in years.” The angel said, “I am Gabriel who stands before God and was sent to bring you this good news. You will not be able to speak until these things happen because you have not believed my words. Yet, they shall be fulfilled in their time.”
Thoughts: (Read all. Ponder those that attract you.)
1. God prepares everything. He sends his special angel, Gabriel, at the very moment when Zechariah is offering incense.
2. God chooses John’s name and has gigantic plans for him.
3. Even though he sees an angel, Zechariah cannot believe what he hears.
4. In spite of Zechariah’s disbelief, God does not withdraw the gift. The promises will be fulfilled in their time.
5. God purifies Zechariah by making him mute until the child is born.
6. For now, his lack of faith disqualifies him from being a good witness.
Affections: (When one touches your heart, use your own words.)
1. O God, you prepare everything. Let me trust you.
2. O God, your plans for me are beyond all my imagination. Your thoughts are beyond my thoughts.
3. O Lord, purge me of any lack of faith which would destroy your plans.
4. O Lord, even when I did not believe, you did not withdraw your gifts.
5. Help me, Jesus to believe even before I see.
6. O Lord, your promises to me can still be accomplished! I am not too old.
Resolutions: (Possibly you might want to make your own.)
1. I will live by trust in God’s plans for me.
2. I will be confident that God’s power can bring about everything.
Thought for the Day: (To recall your meditation)
These things will still be fulfilled in their time.