Journey to Christmas (Day 3)
Joy and delight
Today we continue our journey towards Christmas with Elizabeth and Zechariah. Zechariah is in the temple, offering prayers to God, and has a surprise encounter with an angel. Finally, Zechariah and Elizabeth’s prayer is being answered – and with it comes the promise of joy and delight. They will have a son who will play a part in God’s mission.
If I’m honest, my attitude towards answered prayer can sometimes be indifference, ingratitude, or entitlement: ‘Well, God, it took You long enough!’ In those times, am I missing out on the joy and delight that is available to me?
What was the last prayer God answered for me? How did my heart respond?
Lord, I ask Your forgiveness for the times when I haven’t fully appreciated Your kindness to me.
Pause and pray
God, would You dismantle the culture of entitlement and ingratitude, especially as it can be heightened at Christmas time. Lord, I pray for my church. Help us to resist this culture and act in the opposite spirit. May our community be characterised by gratitude, delight, and joy.
Pause and pray
God answers Zechariah and Elizabeth’s prayer for their own sake – to give them joy. But God also has bigger plans – plans for a whole people – to bring them back to Himself. When the Lord fulfils His promises to me and answers my prayers, it is rarely just for me alone. Blessing also spills over to the lives of those around me.
God, I give myself to joy, to delight. As I receive from You, may I share Your love, Your grace, and Your redemption to all those around me.