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We’re so glad you found our website. Whether you’re visiting us from another part of the world, or from right here in the Huntersville, North Carolina area — welcome!

Pastor Paul's Blog

Advent Conspiracy Daily Devotionals - December 5, 2018

December 5

Luke 1:18-25 (CEV)

18 Zechariah said to the angel, “How will I know this is going to happen? My wife and I are both very old.”

19 The angel answered, “I am Gabriel, God’s servant, and I was sent to tell you this good news. 20 You have not believed what I have said. So you will not be able to say a thing until all this happens. But everything will take place when it is supposed to.”

21 The crowd was waiting for Zechariah and kept wondering why he was staying so long in the temple. 22 When he did come out, he could not speak, and they knew he had seen a vision. He motioned to them with his hands, but did not say a thing.

23 When Zechariah’s time of service in the temple was over, he went home. 24 Soon after that, his wife was expecting a baby, and for five months she did not leave the house. She said to herself, 25 “What the Lord has done for me will keep people from looking down on me.”

Continuing the story of John the Baptist, the one who was to come and pave the way for the Messiah, we continue with this story of Zechariah and Elizabeth. From yesterday, we remember they were “barren.” Advanced in age, they had no children. As Zechariah does his priestly duty in the Temple, offering incense on behalf of the people to the Lord, he sees the angel of the Lord. The angel tells him “his prayers are answered” and that he and Elizabeth would have a child, a special child. I think Zechariah does what I would have done, what most of us would have done. He questions. How can this be? How will I know? We are old!

I have always believed and preached that there is nothing wrong with doubt. To me, doubt is a pathway to belief. Yet, Zechariah is “muted” for his questioning, and unable to speak until the boy, John, is born.

Elizabeth, on the other hand, seems to express no doubt when she receives the news. In that culture, to be barren was considered a curse, something to be ashamed of, in which women were often considered less than if they couldn’t conceive. Elizabeth closes the curtains, stays inside the house, but must feel somehow vindicated, to keep “people from looking down on me.”

This interplay between doubt and belief is an interesting one. I preach and teach and live the life of the Pastor/Priest. I have witnessed and experienced many wonders God has done. But, each time it amazes me. Why should it amaze? God is faithful and does amazing things. Yet, I face doubts and fears about the next one. Is that your experience? You know God can. But will he this time? Maybe just shutting up and patiently waiting is a faithful response, in spite of our doubts and fears. Whatever you are looking for from God right now, be patient, wait, your answer is coming. And the answer will likely surprise you.