Annunciation to Zechariah
Zechariah and Elizabeth were righteous and blameless, even when they were barren, even when life had been cruel for them. Many would have asked them what was the use of being so devout? Many would have questioned God asking why was He cruel to such good people. When the world may have questioned their devotion, when the world would have questioned God’s intentions for this faithful couple, Zechariah and Elizabeth chose to keep their life pure.
Their devotion is not dominated by their circumstances. Rather it rises above it. It rises to a God who is bigger than any problem that they could have in their life. They chose to trust and obey and be people of character even when it was difficult and they seemingly got no reward for it. They knew God could be trusted even when circumstances and people could not be trusted. They knew they have trusted a God who works beyond human understanding.
Today even we may have this rational question as to why bad things happen to good and devout people. Zechariah and Elizabeth being from a devout family would have been asked this piercing question time and again. Their faith defies rationality. Because our God is a God beyond human understanding and rationality. He cannot be confined within human understanding and rationality. When the world thought that they should have given up their fruitless faith, they still continued in faith. They truly became people of God. So God was faithful to Zechariah and remembered him. That’s what the name Zechariah meant – God who remembers. When the world thought that God had forgotten him, God remembered him.
Arthur Ashe was the first black man to win the U.S. Open, Australian Open and Wimbledon. During a heart surgery in 1983, he got infected by the blood that he received and contracted AIDS. From all over the world, he received letters from his fans, one of which conveyed: “Why does GOD have to select you for such a bad disease”?
To this, Arthur Ashe replied:
“The world over — 50 million children start playing tennis, 5 million learn to play tennis,
500,000 learn professional tennis, 50,000 come to the circuit, 5000 reach the grand slam,
50 reach Wimbledon, 4 to semi final, 2 to the finals,
when I was holding a cup I never asked GOD ‘Why me?’.
And today in pain I should not be asking GOD ‘Why me?’ ”
Happiness keeps you Sweet,
Trials keep you Strong,
Sorrow keeps you Human,
Failure keeps you humble and Success keeps you glowing, but only Faith & Attitude Keeps you going..”
God had a reason why he chose Zechariah and Elizabeth to go through such a long time of barrenness. Because in His own right time, He would choose Zechariah and Elizabeth to play a part in the salvation of all mankind by being parents of John. God would provide them the answer in the right way in the right time.
Today do you think God hasn’t answered your prayer that you have been praying for a long time? Do you feel God has forgotten you? Continue to put your faith in God. And he will give you the answer.
Lord, help me to trust in you, even when circumstances are difficult. I know You are bigger than any circumstance. In Jesus name, Amen.
THOUGHT FOR THE DAY
Trusting God in light could be easy, But trusting God in the dark needs faith.
Rev. Thomas John, Carmel MTC, Boston
Christian Education Forum, Diocese of NAE of the Mar Thoma Church