Luke 1:57-66 NRSVue
57Now the time came for Elizabeth to give birth, and she bore a son. 58Her neighbors and relatives heard that the Lord had shown his great mercy to her, and they rejoiced with her.
59On the eighth day they came to circumcise the child, and they were going to name him Zechariah after his father. 60But his mother said, “No; he is to be called John.” 61They said to her, “None of your relatives has this name.” 62Then they began motioning to his father to find out what name he wanted to give him. 63He asked for a writing tablet and wrote, “His name is John.” And all of them were amazed. 64Immediately his mouth was opened and his tongue freed, and he began to speak, praising God. 65Fear came over all their neighbors, and all these things were talked about throughout the entire hill country of Judea. 66All who heard them pondered them and said, “What then will this child become?” For indeed the hand of the Lord was with him.
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Some thoughts on this scripture
Even in his old age, Zechariah was ready to break from the old patterns. I ask for the help that I need to step away from usual patterns and to follow God's call.
I pray for all children: may the joy and hope that they experience live and grow into a deep appreciation of God's goodness.
It would be good to stop and spend some time watching developments in the house of Elizabeth - once childless - after she has given birth to her "miracle" child.
How must Elizabeth be feeling? How has it all impacted on old Zechariah? What about the friends and neighbours? What do they make of it?
And what about my world? Does God break in - or try to break in - to my life?
/He is to be called John./ The giving of a name was rightly a serious matter. We grow into our names, identify with them, pick them out on a page, hear them above the chatter of conversation. One day my parents and possibly others were choosing a name for me, wondering /What then will this child become?/ And indeed the hand of the Lord was with me too. Thank you, Lord, for my name, and for the dreams that people invested in me.