Daily Meditations Published by IT Fellowship of North America & Europe Diocese of Mar Thoma Church
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Word for the day by Christian Education Forum
Birth of John the Baptist Luke 1:55-66
v63 – ...“His name is John”
Rabindranath Tagore once said, “Every child comes with the message that God is not yet discouraged of man.” The birth of John the Baptist would have been the most talked about and celebrated event in the town at that time. People would have been talking about how God had blessed Zechariah and Elizabeth in their old age with the gift of a child. But the real implications of John’s birth go beyond that. We see a glimpse of his significance in the event of his birth and naming. His mother wanted to name him John as commanded by the angel to his father Zechariah. Since that was not according to the custom of that time, their neighbors and relatives consulted his father, who wrote the words on a tablet, “His name is John”. These words are specially important because, they show:
Name with a meaning
Zechariah writes with certainty that his son’s name is John. It is not a request from him. He says it as if his son is already named. It is God’s will that his name was John. The meaning of John shows what God has done for Zechariah and Elizabeth. John means God is gracious or God has shown favor. Elizabeth and Zechariah are now able to see God’s larger design for their life. Now they realize that their barrenness all these years was not an accident. Neither was John’s birth an accident. The birth of John gave meaning to their existence and past years of barrenness. In Malayalam the word disaster or accident can also be translated as anartham (literally, an event without meaning). There is no meaningless existence or accident in God’s design. All that seems beyond our comprehension now has deep meaning in God’s plan and serves his purposes.
Words of healing
Zechariah’s writing that declared the child’s name as John also became the words of healing that gave him back his ability to speak. God had taken away Zechariah’s ability to speak after the vision in the Temple. I feel that it would have been because of the doubts and negative thoughts that came to his mind when the angel revealed God’s plan for him. Our negative thoughts and words can often become obstacles to follow God’s will in our lives. That’s why in Zechariah’s life, God literally silenced him till he saw God’s promise coming true. When Zechariah declared the child’s name to his people, his simple words became words of healing. Our simple words can become healing words, if we align our words to do God’s will.
PRAYER Lord, open my eyes and my heart to see your plans for my life. Let my will and my words conform to you, Amen.
THOUGHT FOR THE DAY Those who submit things to God’s hands will ultimately see God’s hand in everything.
Rev. Thomas John, Carmel Mar Thoma Church, Boston Christian Education Forum, Diocese of NAE of the Mar Thoma Church
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