I remember just late last year I was asked what I thought and I started to tell a story and while it was happening I was asking myself why was I telling this story and where was it going? Eventually it got to a point where I realized God was trying to tell me what to do. The Holy Spirit was just using me to speak the words, not only to let the other person in on the journey of discovery but also so that the plans for the future and the reason for a decision was to be made.
This morning’s reading was similar as John the Baptist’s dad Zechariah spoke…
67John’s father Zechariah was filled with the Holy Spirit, and he spoke God’s message:
68“Let us praise the Lord, the God of Israel! He has come to the help of his people and has set them free. 69He has provided for us a mighty Savior, a descendant of his servant David. 70He promised through his holy prophets long ago 71that he would save us from our enemies, from the power of all those who hate us. 72He said he would show mercy to our ancestors and remember his sacred covenant. 73-74With a solemn oath to our ancestor Abraham he promised to rescue us from our enemies and allow us to serve him without fear, 75so that we might be holy and righteous before him all the days of our life. 76“You, my child, will be called a prophet of the Most High God. You will go ahead of the Lord to prepare his road for him, 77to tell his people that they will be saved by having their sins forgiven. 78Our God is merciful and tender. He will cause the bright dawn of salvation to rise on us 79and to shine from heaven on all those who live in the dark shadow of death, to guide our steps into the path of peace.”
80The child grew and developed in body and spirit. He lived in the desert until the day when he appeared publicly to the people of Israel. –Luke 1:67-80
In my case I was listening to hear where the story I was telling was going. I wondered how it would give me a clue to what I was supposed to do. I was pray for God’s wisdom and discernment as it was to be a big step in how God would use me to lead and develop as a leader. And God didn’t leave me hanging, He spoke a message of possessing the land!
This morning’s reading continues into Ephesians 3 where we received the secret…Grab a hold of it and do not be discouraged!
1For this reason I, Paul, the prisoner of Christ Jesus for the sake of you Gentiles, pray to God. 2Surely you have heard that God in his grace has given me this work to do for your good. 3God revealed his secret plan and made it known to me. (I have written briefly about this, 4and if you will read what I have written, you can learn about my understanding of the secret of Christ.) 5In past times human beings were not told this secret, but God has revealed it now by the Spirit to his holy apostles and prophets. 6The secret is that by means of the gospel the Gentiles have a part with the Jews in God’s blessings; they are members of the same body and share in the promise that God made through Christ Jesus. 7I was made a servant of the gospel by God’s special gift, which he gave me through the working of his power. 8I am less than the least of all God’s people; yet God gave me this privilege of taking to the Gentiles the Good News about the infinite riches of Christ, 9and of making all people see how God’s secret plan is to be put into effect. God, who is the Creator of all things, kept his secret hidden through all the past ages, 10in order that at the present time, by means of the church, the angelic rulers and powers in the heavenly world might learn of his wisdom in all its different forms. 11God did this according to his eternal purpose, which he achieved through Christ Jesus our Lord. 12In union with Christ and through our faith in him we have the boldness to go into God’s presence with all confidence. 13I beg you, then, not to be discouraged because I am suffering for you; it is all for your benefit. — Ephesians 3:1-13
Do not get discouraged and don’t grow weary in doing good work! God’s desire is for us to understand! So let’s pray for understanding!
A Prayer for Understanding
33Teach me, Lord, the meaning of your laws, and I will obey them at all times.
34Explain your law to me, and I will obey it; I will keep it with all my heart.
35Keep me obedient to your commandments, because in them I find happiness.
36Give me the desire to obey your laws rather than to get rich.
37Keep me from paying attention to what is worthless; be good to me, as you have promised.
38Keep your promise to me, your servant—the promise you make to those who obey you.
39Save me from the insults I fear; how wonderful are your judgments!
40I want to obey your commands; give me new life, for you are righteous.