Luke 1:11-17

SCRIPTURE 11 Then an angel of the Lord appeared to him, standing at the right side of the altar of incense. 12 When Zechariah saw him, he was startled and was gripped with fear. 13 But the angel said to him: “Do not be afraid, Zechariah; your prayer has been heard. Your wife Elizabeth will bear you a son, and you are to give him the name John…16 Many of the people of Israel will he bring back to the Lord their God. 17 And he will go on before the Lord, in the spirit and power of Elijah, to turn the hearts of the fathers to their children and the disobedient to the wisdom of the righteous–to make ready a people prepared for the Lord.”


God has a plan and purpose for mankind and history is His story unfolding.  His plans and purposes will be accomplished and they are accomplished in partnership with people.


Why did God choose Zechariah and Elizabeth? There are some clues in the account .  Both of them were upright people who served God faithfully and who were obedient to His commands.  They lived a life of faith and worship to God. But I think there is another reason why God chose this couple, we see it in the statement the angel made right after he calmed down a very frightened Z.  He says, “God has heard your prayer!”  I wonder if God in chooses those who are praying.  Peter quoting the psalmist says…

  • 1 Peter 3:12 (NKJV)  For the eyes of the LORD are on the righteous, And His ears are open to their prayers…
God is looking to accomplish His plans and purposes and He looks for those who are already praying for something and then He answers it with an even greater answer.  Zechariah and Elizabeth were simply praying for a son, God answers it by giving then not just any son but the one that the prophets had spoken of hundreds of years earlier:  the man who would be the one who announced the coming of Jesus.  Jesus described John and the greatest among men. 

What if praying puts us smack in the middle of God’s radar?  God says, “I’m looking for someone who can be a part of my plan, oh there you are, I hear you praying!” God is looking for pray-ers to work through.  My encouragement is to start praying for the things that God would put on my heart and then be ready for God to use me to help accomplish His great and glorious plan.