The Gift of Waiting

27 Dec

Zacharias served as a priest in the temple of the Lord. His “lot was to burn incense.” (v.9) Scripture assures us that his dear wife, Elisabeth, was a godly lady.

They had spent many years in the Lord’s service. They loved Him and lived “righteous” (Luke 1:6) and pleasing lives before Him. They loved His Word and could be found “walking in all (his) commandments and ordinances..” (Luke 1:6)

From a list of such qualities it would seem that they met all of the requirements for blessing, wouldn’t it?

From a human viewpoint it surely would yet in verse seven we find sweet Elisabeth barren.

I can only imagine the pain in her heart and the ache in her empty womb. I wonder how Zacharias felt as their lives and childless home were in the public eye due to his position in the temple. I’m sure the burden of barrenness was heavy.

It seemed the God they loved so much and served so long had forgotten them. 

To our finite comprehension this doesn’t seem fair.

Why would God allow this godly couple to suffer with barrenness? If any one deserved a baby, they did! They would raise their child in the ways of the Lord!

 Why would He let this happen?

Because He was giving them the GIFT of waiting.

Yes, He was using their burden to bless them in a most wonderful way!  

And after many years of preparing them for this special boy, He sent an unexpected visitor to make the surprising announcement.

  “And there appeared unto him an angel of the Lord standing on the right side of the altar of incense. And when Zacharias saw him, he was troubled, and fear fell upon him. But the angel said unto him, Fear not, Zacharias: for thy prayer is heard; and thy wife Elisabeth shall bear thee a son, and thou shalt call his name John. And thou shalt have joy and gladness; and many shall rejoice at his birth.”

 Luke 1:11-14

The waiting was a gift because it brought John’s birth at the perfect time. At the perfect time for their son to be the forerunner to their Messiah!

If God had given them a baby at any other time, their son wouldn’t have played such a vital role in the Plan to bring Salvation to men.

God gave Zacharias and Elisabeth the blessed gift of waiting!

  “For he shall be great in the sight of the Lord, and shall drink neither wine nor strong drink; and he shall be filled with the Holy Ghost, even from his mother’s womb. And many of the children of Israel shall he turn to the Lord their God. And he shall go before him in the spirit and power of Elias, to turn the hearts of the fathers to the children, and the disobedient to the wisdom of the just; to make ready a people prepared for the Lord.”

Luke 1:15-17

As I read this passage, I realized that God has given me the same gift this Christmas. I find myself waiting for a new season, for desires and dreams to come true, but instead of viewing the waiting as a burden, I pray He’ll continue teaching me how to view it as the blessing and gift it is!

Thank you, God, for the Gift of your Son 2,000 years ago and for the gift of waiting for your perfect purpose to be worked out!


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