Then an angel of the Lord appeared to him, standing on the right side of the altar of incense. When Zechariah saw him, he was troubled, and fear fell upon him. But the angel said to him, “Do not fear, Zechariah, for your prayer has been heard, and your wife Elizabeth will bear you a son, and you shall call his name John. You will have joy and gladness, and many will rejoice at his birth. For he will be great in the sight of the Lord, and shall drink neither wine nor strong drink, and he will be filled with the Holy Spirit, even from his mother’s womb. He will turn many of the sons of Israel to the Lord their God. And he will go before Him in the spirit and power of Elijah, 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 1:11-17 (MEV)
Our son Jonathan and his wife Kelly are expecting their third baby. In just a couple weeks, she is scheduled to have a C-section, and our twelfth grandchild will enter this world. They have set up the baby’s room with all the essential needs, have picked out the name, and have paid all the necessary hospital and doctor expenses, getting prepared for their newest arrival. We are all so excited for this new life and to have the opportunity to hold and nestle this little one in our arms.
Can you imagine how excited Zechariah and Elizabeth were, when they received the wonderful news that after a long wait, they were going to finally have the baby for which they had prayed? The angel gave them preparatory instructions for the baby’s arrival. It would be a boy. His name would be John. He would never drink wine or strong drink. He would bear the message of repentance in the spirit of Elijah. John would prepare the way to the one to come: the long awaited Messiah.
The angel’s news here was a preparation of the preparation. First, baby John the preparer, then finally Jesus Christ the Messiah. The news was exciting then, and it is still exciting today. Jesus has already come into the world many years ago, and what He did then is still a gift today, and a gift for all generations to come.
Soon, our family will celebrate the birth of our little Olivia, and we will rejoice in her birth. The world will soon celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ, and as we enter the Christmas season, we look with great expectancy and we rejoice!
Dear Messiah, Thank you for the greatest gift of all time. Amen.
~ Jenny Calvert