December 6: Luke 1:5-10
Luke 1:5-10 (NIV)
In the time of Herod king of Judea there was a priest named Zechariah, who belonged to the priestly division of Abijah; his wife Elizabeth was also a descendant of Aaron. Both of them were righteous in the sight of God, observing all the Lord’s commands and decrees blamelessly. But they were childless because Elizabeth was not able to conceive, and they were both very old.
Once when Zechariah’s division was on duty and he was serving as priest before God, he was chosen by lot, according to the custom of the priesthood, to go into the temple of the Lord and burn incense. And when the time for the burning of incense came, all the assembled worshipers were praying outside.
In ancient cultures, couples, especially the wives, were looked down on for not having children. There was a lot of stigma, and it would’ve produced a lot of shame. Older couples like this would have been considered worthless. Yet, God didn’t see them as worthless. And by chance (or by God’s divine providence) Zechariah had the chance to light the incense in the temple. In doing so, he was able to have a divine encounter and find out that God had something big planned for his family. God had plans for someone special to be born.
If a committee wanted to choose a couple to give birth to someone special, they might secure a handful of great candidates. Maybe they would choose someone with kids already, or qu,aity parents who haven't had kids yet. BUt they certainly wouldn’t choose someone old, or well beyond childbearing years. Yet, that’s exactly who God chooses to give birth to this special child. God uses the ones the world views as useless.
Is there an area in your life where you’ve experienced stigma or shame? Is there any area where it feels you have the least to offer? Is it possible that God could do something special with that?
What would it look like for you to lay down the shame and trust that God still has good things in store for you?
God, the One who uses those the world throws away, use me.