Rose Park Sunday School (Adults and Children) at 8:45 a.m. / Worship at 9:45 a.m.

Madison Sunday School (Adults and Children) 10:15 a.m. / Worship at 11:15 a.m.

July 30, 2022

Read Luke 1:57-66

57 When the time came for Elizabeth to have her child, she gave birth to a boy. 58 Her neighbors and relatives celebrated with her because they had heard that the Lord had shown her great mercy. 59 On the eighth day, it came time to circumcise the child. They wanted to name him Zechariah because that was his father’s name. 60 But his mother replied, “No, his name will be John.” 61 They said to her, “None of your relatives have that name.” 62 Then they began gesturing to his father to see what he wanted to call him. 63 After asking for a tablet, he surprised everyone by writing, “His name is John.” 64 At that moment, Zechariah was able to speak again, and he began praising God. 65 All their neighbors were filled with awe, and everyone throughout the Judean highlands talked about what had happened. 66 All who heard about this considered it carefully. They said, “What then will this child be?” Indeed, the Lord’s power was with him.

Good morning! Rejoice for the Lord is good to us!

This song from my childhood popped into my head this morning. As I sing it in my head, a calmness fills my body and I am smiling. Praise be to God!

Oh, the Lord’s been good to me. 

And so I thank the Lord 

For giving me the things I need: 

The sun, the rain and the appleseed; 

Oh, the Lord’s been good to me. 

I wake up every day 

As happy as can be, 

Because I know the Lord is there 

Watchin’ over all my friends and me 

The Lord is good to me. 

Zechariah’s inability to speak lasted for almost a year. It began when the angel Gabriel came to him in a vision and foretold the birth of his son to him. Zechariah and Sarah were elderly and thus far had not been blessed with children. Considering his situation, It was reasonable for Zechariah to doubt this revelation. Because of his doubt, Gabriel told him that his ability to speak would be gone until his son, who was to be named John, was born. John was the name that Gabriel said gave to Zechariah. 

When Zechariah’s speech returned, he didn’t waste time talking about why his speech was gone or complaining to God. Instead, he praised God and began to prophesy as he was filled with the Holy Spirit.

76 And you, my child, will be called a prophet of the Most High;

    for you will go on before the Lord to prepare the way for him, 77 

to give his people the knowledge of salvation through the forgiveness of their sins,

78 because of the tender mercy of our God, by which the rising sun will come to us from heaven

79 to shine on those living in darkness and in the shadow of death, to guide our feet into the path of peace.” 80 And the child grew and became strong in spirit; and he lived in the wilderness until he appeared publicly to Israel. (Luke 1:76-80)

Zechariah’s son, John the Baptist, would indeed prepare the way for the coming of the light (Jesus) and proclaim God’s love and mercy to everyone who was ready to hear. 

Loving and Caring God, Thank You for loving us. We have trouble, just like Zechariah, when we promise us things that we can’t imagine. Your power is great. Help us learn to listen and trust in You. In Jesus’ name, we pray. Amen

Thought for the day: Even when I struggle to comprehend God’s love and presence, God is still there.

Smile! God is Here! Pastor Liz