Pastor read from Luke chapter 1 for the two readings last evening. The first was the annunciation of John's birth and the second the birth of John the Baptist. I was able to read both readings prior to the service, so when Pastor began reading them, I was able to listen and contemplate and this verse struck me, "Do not be afraid, Zechariah, for your prayer has been heard, and your wife Elizabeth will bear you a son, and you shall call his name John." (Luke 1: 12)
"For your prayer has been heard" is the phrase that caught my ear. What prayer? He was serving as High Priest and praying for the people, but not that prayer. The prayer heard was the one he had prayed and Elizabeth had prayed their whole married life - to have children. And now, when they probably aren't praying for that due to being "advanced in years," now God is ready to fulfill that request.
A prayer that had seemed to go unheard for all these years and now to our shaded human eyes seems impossible, is now granted. When God allows us to see His viewpoint, it makes perfect sense. But we live in this veil of tears and the devil, the world, and our own sinful flesh cloud our vision and obscure the true picture.
God's timing is perfect, whether we see it or not. May He grant us the faith to see and believe and confess, just as He did for Zechariah.
"And his father Zechariah was filled with the Holy Spirit and prophesied, saying,
for he has visited and redeemed his people
and has raised up a horn of salvation for us
in the house of his servant David,
as he spoke by the mouth of his holy prophets from of old,
that we should be saved from our enemies
and from the hand of all who hate us;
to show the mercy promised to our fathers
and to remember his holy covenant,
the oath that he swore to our father Abraham,
to grant us that we,
being delivered from the hand of our enemies,
might serve him without fear,
in holiness and righteousness before him all our days.
And you, child, will be called the prophet of the Most High;
for you will go before the Lord to prepare his ways,
to give knowledge of salvation to his people
in the forgiveness of their sins,
because of the tender mercy of our God,
whereby the sunrise shall visit us
from on high to give light to those who sit in darkness and in the shadow of death,
to guide our feet into the way of peace.'" (Luke 1:67-79)