Zechariah & Elizabeth

Open Your Bible

Luke 1:5-25, Luke 1:57-66, 1 Samuel 1:9-18, Psalm 113:5-9

In our broken condition, even mustard-seed faith is often hard to muster. Take Zechariah, for example. In the first chapter of his Gospel, Luke records that Zechariah had many reasons to trust God. He came from a family of priests who had served God for generations. Surely, the stories of God’s faithfulness had trickled down through Zechariah’s family line. Or maybe through the line of his wife, Elizabeth, who was also from the line of Aaron.

Who was Israel’s first high priest (Numbers 17:8–18:1).
Whose feet had felt the dry sand at the bottom of the Red Sea (Exodus 14:15–31).
Who tasted manna with his own taste buds (Exodus 16).
Who entered the holy of holies and saw God appear in a cloud above the mercy seat (Leviticus 16:2–3).

What stories of God might they have heard?

Zechariah was a praying man who had asked the Lord for a child, and Scripture tells us God heard that prayer (Luke 1:13). Since Zechariah and his wife were “well along in years” (v.18), we can assume they had been praying for a long time, likely decades. Hadn’t Zechariah kept praying in faith? Hadn’t he asked, expecting God to respond? Luke reveals that as Zechariah entered the temple to offer the incense offering, “the whole assembly of the people was praying outside” (v.10). Was his faith strengthened by the image of an entire assembly seeking the Lord?

With a heritage of faith, a history of God’s faithfulness, and the prayers of the people ringing in his ears, you’d think that trusting God would come naturally to Zechariah. Except, of course, it didn’t in this moment. When Gabriel announced that God heard Zechariah’s prayers and was about to do all that Zechariah asked and more, Zechariah replied, “How can I know this?” (v.18). From my own human experience, what I hear in his words is this: “How can I know for sure?” It seems Zechariah was overcome with doubt, not faith. Though he had so many reasons to stand tall on his trust in God, the legs of Zechariah’s faith wobbled. The angel struck him mute as a result (vv.19–20).

Because our hearts are still bruised from the fall, unwavering faith is hard won. Despite all that God has given us, do you, like Zechariah, still doubt that He will come through? Me too. When my need leads me to the intersection of fear and faith, I look at God’s promises and think, How can I know for sure?

Lean in. Listen to the angel’s answer.

“You will become silent and unable to speak until the days these things take place,
because you did not believe my words, which will be fulfilled in their proper time” (v.20).

Though God certainly calls us to trust Him, we can read Zechariah’s story and find hope. Zechariah’s weak faith did not weaken God’s power. His doubt didn’t stop John, the forerunner to Jesus, from being born. When your own legs of faith start to wobble, take courage, because nothing can stop the plans of God.

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109 thoughts on "Zechariah & Elizabeth"

  1. Ada McCloud says:

    I find comfort in knowing that even priests can question and doubt.

  2. Mackenzie Pearson says:

    I really loved this devotional today. At times, I feel disconnected from God bc I feel as if he doesn’t hear me bc he hasn’t answered my prayer after several years. This was a good reminder that he always hears & to keep the faith.

  3. Kelsey Maureen says:

    I appreciated this as I have been doubting God’s power and trying to find understanding on HOW God works. I loved the part where the author talked about God’s plans working despite the doubt. God works even if we do not fully see His plan in total.

  4. Kelley S says:

    Wow! I love this; only our involvement and experience are hindered when we doubt.

  5. Diana Dire says:

    Thank you, Father, that despite my imperfect faith, You still hear me and carry me through.

  6. Alicia McCann says:

    Nothing can stop the plans of God! What a powerful reminder

  7. Erica Askren says:

    I liked this part: “Zechariah’s weak faith did not weaken God’s power.” This was a good reminder that I do not limit God in any way! He is so much bigger and that is something to be thankful for.

  8. Sheri Sullivan says:

    Even when we doubt, Gods plans are already at work. I have the hardest time seeing the end result. Something I need to work on a lot more.

  9. Sadie Dybizbanski says:

    Great reminder that our faith doesn’t not alter God’s will only our involvement and experience of His will being carried out.

  10. Jennifer Anapol says:

    I love that God still answers our prayers, even when we doubt. His plan still come to pass not because of us, but in spite of us.

  11. rebecca kilo says:

    if anyone has doubt that something they want isn’t going the way the want it to , trust God has a better plan . sometimes the things we want aren’t what’s best for us .

    1. Jennifer Anapol says:


  12. Rhonda Wood says:

    Jeremiah 33:3 call unto me and I will answer you and show you great and mighty things you do not know. Sorry I didn’t type the whole verse
    I know that my God hears and knows what is happening and That He is for me not against me. He will lead me to still waters and He will restore my soul. Jesus has shown me to focus on His word and worship when I am down or discouraged to turn my eyes upon Him. He also told me to collect rocks and ponder on all the times He has answered prayers and worked in my life or others in my family. I prayed so long for my abusive alcoholic father to know the lord and He just got baptized and is following Jesus at 83 years old and was delivered from his addiction in Jesus name! My sister also got saved and baptized a few years ago as well and is following the Lord. I never thought that would happen but Gods ways are not our ways. I kept praying and God answered my deepest desire for them to know him!
    My God is in the business of saving and restoring families and individuals. I am constantly being reminded not to look at what is happening when persecution comes but to think eternally look up and see my salvation for that comes from the Lord. Keep your eyes focused on him ! And see His faithfulness write it down and ponder on it remember it when doubt creeps in to lie to you and say Where is your God? He will never leave us nor forsake us He is there. Just begin to worship him and read His words of truth!

  13. Rhonda Wood says:

    Jeremiah 33:3
    Call unto me and I will show you great and mighty things you do not know.
    God wants us to seek him pray to him and he will answer us and show us his ways. Moses prayed that God would show him His ways so he might know them and that is my prayer. Oh ,Lord Jesus show me your ways so I might know you and help me to follow you in all that I do today so your name may be glorified. Help me to see the lost as you see them and open their eyes to know you. Help me to hear your voice and follow you for your glory and for your honour . Amen

  14. Judy Thigpenn says:

    Knowing that God hears our prayers should bring us all hope but there are those moments when we need proof just like Zachariah. We ask the question God how long? So my prayer is that God will help me in the moments of doubts.

  15. Deborah Collazo says:

    He knows I doubt some times. He knows my faith fails me at times. I want to certainly know every time without doubts that He is there, always. But even if so doubt, He will not change. He doesn’t waiver like my emotions & feelings do. He will do as He has planned and it will be good. ❤️

  16. Audra says:

    My faith is beyond wobbly. Considering the insanity of this current time it so hard to hopeful or should I say faithful. I pray. I read the Bible. I talk to God so much, but…..I’m not sure wobbly is a proper word for my faith right now

  17. Brandi Smith says:


  18. Dawn W says:


  19. Samantha Delgado says:

    I started a business this past week and doubt keeps flooding my mind that it will be successful. I prayed before starting it and I pray everyday that God will just do what needs to be done to make it thrive. Before sitting down to start my devotions this morning I prayed that God would speak to me threw his word and he has threw today’s reading! He is faithful! If he told me to start this business then he will make sure that it will grow I just need to have faith and trust in him!

    1. Dawn W says:

      Hi Samantha! I am feeling the same way as you are. I started a business recently with my sister and I doubted it because I felt like I forgot to ask God about it first…even though we’d been talking about this for years. I felt guilty and that led to doubt. But I had to quickly relay that God will bless my desires and he himself had laid them on my heart. Stay encouraged! I will pray for you and your business as I pray for mine!

      1. Samantha Delgado says:

        You got it❤️!

  20. Laura Barthelmess says:

    So good! Praise the Lord!

  21. Gaby Dal sasso says:

    His faithful and won’t change ❤️

  22. Erin Clark says:

    This was just what I needed to hear lately. I’ve been praying the same prayer for years, yet, it feels as God’s not hearing them. To remember to trust in the Lord, who hears, who sees, who provides. Even when my faith is wavering, it doesn’t shake God’s power!

  23. Kaitlin Akvan says:

    I wanted to ask for a bit of help with this one. I have prayed for God to help me understand. For some reason, I always see this passage as Zechariah getting punished for expressing his human nature. Does anyone have any tips for me on interpreting this passage?

    1. Martha Echandy says:

      Hi Kaitlin. Punishment seems to convey a harsh final sentence which no doubt is mentioned in God’s word, especially referring to the final judgment. In the meantime, God deals with us with such a teachable merciful spirit! Zechariah was finally able to speak after spending a few months in silence. Lots of time to reflect and to speak, with God. Imagine this happening to us. Now, doesn’t He stop or take away things in life to give us time to come to Him? Hasn’t He has done this recently in our world? God seizes these incredible teaching moments in our life with care and love for Zechariah was blessed by this and after this trial people saw it too.

    2. Nicole Morris says:

      I don’t look at it as being punished, as much as looking at it as the sign Zechariah asked the angel for by saying “How will I know this?” This was a way of reassuring Zechariah that indeed God would follow through with His plan to bless them with a child.

      I think it is also a reminder that in our times of waiting and doubt, sometimes we need to be silent before the Lord and listen for His voice to guide us through. I wholeheartedly agree with expressing our needs and human nature to God and taking it before him. However, too often, I’ll talk over God in my prayers by saying what I think should happen, and I don’t stop to give him a chance to respond to my need. When I sit in silent prayer, I’m more likely to hear the still, small whispers of what the Lord has for me in that moment. I wonder if that was a sweet season for Zechariah to press in to the promises of the Lord or if he approached it from a point of frustration that he couldn’t speak during the waiting period.

    3. Shelby McCrary says:

      I believe he was stricken mute so that he could be given the ability to listen to what the Lord has to say. He was given a direct line and blessing from the Lord and in turn still doubted Him. He’s told immediately afterward to listen.

  24. Meghan Hampton says:

    “Weak faith does not weaken God’s power” wow that is good and what I needed this morning

  25. Eryn Murray says:

    Belief and obedience is important.

  26. Ada Rojas says:

    Gods strength is even stronger in my weakness and He hears me. So good

  27. Erin C says:

    I think it is extremely valuable to take into account the comment, “How can I know for sure?” That reassurance is something we as humans seek in nearly everything. We want it to be sure. But truly, I can testify that when we believe in the plan God has for our lives, certainty for our human ways or not, we are BLOWN away by God’s goodness. I urge anyone that is unsure to fully trust in the Lord’s plan.

  28. Harley JustineNuñez says:

    The fact that I am mixed up and late with this particular reading is pretty funny in an awesome way. I was a college student for most of my 20’s (I’m 30, 31 this year). I was also a stay at home mom most of the time, unable to hold a steady job due to my husband’s past work schedule. Years ago I prayed and sought out a means to provide for my household financially despite my inability to work. God guided me to something I can do. I knew I still needed the skills sharpened before I started. I put it off. Now, I’m further than I was before but am so fearful to make that jump to officially make money. I am reminded through Zachariah to simply have faith. I even became ill to where I can’t even try to work the jobs I used to work, so this is really my only option. I just have to have an unwavering faith in God and his plans for my life.

  29. Whitney George says:

    Nothing can stop the plans of God! AMEN.

  30. LaShawn Alder says:

    This spoke to my nature so much. I have such a control issue, it’s a everyday battle and when I give into the Lord not only are the results amazing, but I find true peace.

  31. Emily Guerra says:

    Nothing can stop the plans of God—what reassuring words of truth when our minds can be filled with so much doubt and uncertainty!

  32. Helen Boeve says:

    Why did God make it so Zechariah

  33. Valerie Clark says:

    “Zechariah’s weak faith did not weaken God’s power”. Thank you for that strong statement. A statement full of encouragement and blessing.

    1. Cynthia Dena says:


  34. Claudia R says:

    I loved the very last sentence! Praise God that He never fails us!

  35. Krystle Brown says:

    I love the way that is summerized. Such hope!

  36. Krystle Brown says:

    I love the quote “your prayer has been heard.”

  37. Nhu Pham says:

    I keep a prayer request journal with the date next to a specific request, and when the prayer gets answered, I will write down how God has answered my prayer and also the date. This helps me to reflect on His ways versus my ways, His thoughts versus my thoughts on the certain issues I pray about. As life comes, when my faith needs a stir up if storm may pass by, I will open this list of the answered prayers and be greatly encouraged and always in awe. He has done it before, and surely He will do it again. God is good, He listens to our petitions and does not forsake those who seeks Him (Psalm 9:10). Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful. (Hebrews 10:23)

  38. RACHEL says:

    The podcast for this week was awesome! One interesting thought discussed was that John, while in Elizabeth’s womb, was filled with the Holy Spirit. Elizabeth notes that the baby leapt at the presence of Mary and her unborn child, Jesus. So you have God, in the flesh, the son, encountering God, the Holy Spirit, while in the wombs of these incredible women of the New Testament. How amazing to ponder upon these details we sometimes miss at first glance.

    1. Harley JustineNuñez says:

      I agree! I loved the podcast this week! It really made me excited to read this series. I’m a bit behind, but that’s because I’m trying to follow it with my husband. lol Anyway, I find it God’s perfect timing that I read Zachariah and Elizabeth’s story today. I’ve been battling and fearful for starting something that God put into my life years ago. I just have to have faith!

    2. Kaitlin Akvan says:

      How do we get to the podcast? Is it on the website? That sounds awesome!

  39. Susan Crosby says:

    When my faith waivers God is faithful. In my weakness He is strong❤️

  40. Kristen Davenport says:

    I have been desperately praying for a change in our situation for 4 years now. The last few months I have felt my faith feeling almost nonexistent. I have felt so close to giving up. This has renewed my heart tonight. Mustard seed size faith but that is all I need.

    1. Shannon Lowry says:

      Will pray for you Kristen, keep the faith

    2. Shannon Lowry says:

      And know how loved and treasured you are!

  41. Angela Smith says:

    Listen and have faith. Sounds easier then it is but God’s love for us does not change even when our faith is week and we are not listening.

  42. Danielle McCutcheon says:

    Pray specifically. Pray with faith. Pray with thanksgiving. Pray knowing and wholeheartedly believing that the Lord loves me. ❤️

  43. Ashley Richtarik says:

    I am so thankful that even when we are faithfulness that God still remains faithful!!!!!!

  44. Carrie Hutton says:

    God has answered my prayers over the last four weeks. I’ve prayed every day for my sister to heal and move on from an abusive relationship. She is blossoming and I give all of the credit to God! My husband and I have helped where we could financially (another blessing from God), but God has brought her emotional healing and strength that had nothing to do with us. Thank you God! You are good and we submit to your will. Use us to fulfill the advancement of your kingdom. Glory to God in the highest!

  45. Liz A says:

    Praise God nothing can stop the will of God; especially not my fear & doubt. Ladies I need your prayers. I have been praying for my (no ex) bf for the past 3yrs. I know God is working in his life; I can see it. Mario tells me. I hear God telling me to “be still” & trust & pray; yet I continuously doubt and try to take it into my own hands.

  46. AnnaFaith Adair says:

    Gods promises are on completely different timeline than what we expect. and i’m so grateful for that

  47. Ammi Pintos says:

    I have been praying for my husband’s salvation over two years now. Some days my faith is shaken. Today I am reminded of everything God has already done for me qns my faith is strengthened

    1. Theresa Leonardo says:

      I am right there with you sister!!! What a great reminder today of God’s perfect timing and His faithfulness to His children. His word will not return to Him void. I will be praying for you and your husband as I pray for mine.

    2. Cara Grefe says:

      I am in the same place as both of you sisters! It’s so easy to get discouraged and even wonder if maybe I’m doing something wrong or on the wrong path. But I will continue to trust God’s timing and knowing he is hearing my prayers. I’ll be praying for your husbands. Please keep mine in your prayers as well!

    3. Terri McCafferty says:

      I’m in similar situation here! Praying for you ladies and your husband

  48. Cindy Beltran says:

    I asked why did the women have to be kept barren? Couldn’t they have had children before conceiving the children God would use. Then I thought of my own story and how I was unable to have children until I met my husband. Had I had children before, how would my life had changed? Would I have even met my husband? God decided to give me children once My huband and I came together and now we have 4 and I am married to a man who loves God. I can imagine having children before would have altered this somehow. It is better to trust Gods wisdom and perfect timing so that we may live a life that glorifies him and is there any greater joy than knowing the Lord and doing our part in the plans He has laid out for us that bring Him glory.

  49. Melissa Mcronney says:

    Amen…powerful.. thank you I needed this. Amen

  50. Beth Ann McCormick says:

    My current, desperate prayer is for my boyfriend to come to know Christ. I desperately hope that I can continue to hope, knowing that my momentary lack of faith does not stop the plans of God.

  51. Angie says:

    Jane K., I have three different areas I would call prayer walls.

    In front of my desk, there are two windows with a space in between. I have put cork-board in that space. I use that area mostly for pictures of people I want to be praying for (family, friends, missionaries, even government employees for our state). I also have a couple lists of names (including SRT women). I like that spot because when I am sitting at my desk working, I can look up at the pictures or read the names and pray for people as God prompts.

    I painted on wall of the room with chalkboard paint. On that wall I have written scriptures that I want to remember to pray for people and for myself. I have even illustrated some as prompted by the Holy Spirit. I have a chair I curl up on next to that wall and pray those scriptures over and over.

    Finally, the closet in that room has also been emptied. One wall is painted in chalkboard paint and on it are the names of God and their meanings, again with small illustrations to help me remember. The side wall has pictures of flowers from our yard to remind me of our great Creator God, and scripture bookmarks of ways to pray for various people. I have Bibles, notebooks, colored pencils, and a few other things. There are clips hooked on the rod for hangers and on each clip are things I have prayed about. Weirdly I guess, I also have a portable massage chair thing and a blanket, because sometimes I just need to cuddle in and decompress in the presence of my Savior.

    I have this space now…because we are empty nesters. However,

    When I was a young mom our house had a dormer. There was no electricity in it but I had a small desk and oil lamp and Bible…and it was wonderful. I also had some pretty amazing praise times in a room, set up with boxes and boxes of clutter and storage and one chair…but in that chair-door closed, in all that clutter, the Spirit of God filled that place.

    Whatever the place, God will meet us there. He sees open and ready hearts. He promises that when we seek Him, He will be found.

    1. Brandy Yell says:

      What a beautiful space ! I can imagine in my head the stillness and peace you must feel . That’s amazing ❤️

    2. Cara Grefe says:

      This sounds amazing! I’m inspired to do something like this for myself! Such a perfect way to give prompts and reminders for what to pray for! I love it

  52. Nads says:

    It is awesome and comforting to know that I cannot, in my doubt or disobedience thwart the plans of God but,…I can certainly thwart my role in it. As we learned from Mordecai, salvation could have come for His people from some other place but, Esther would have lost out on being God’s voice and hands.

    I pray I will take this to heart in my own life, when doubt or the “path of least resistance” feel more palatable to me.

  53. Amy Van Harten says:

    Our weak faith does not cause God to weaken!

  54. April Pettefer says:

    I see Zechariah’s doubt as a form of self-protection. He was afraid to hope, to trust, to believe this promise because he wasn’t sure if his heart could take yet another disappointment. I’ve been there. Most of us have. But what we need to remember is that our Father will protect our hearts far better than we ever could. Even when what we hope for does not happen, God will protect my heart better than I would by building a wall of self protection that keeps hope out.

  55. April Pettefer says:

    I see Zechariah’s doubt as a form of self-protection. He was afraid to hope, to trust, to believe this promise lest his heart get crushed yet again. I’be been there. Even my daughter was afraid to get excited about youth camp because the first two camps had been cancelled, and she said it would hurt too much to have her hopes crushed again. But what I must remember is that God will do a far better job of protecting my heart, even in disappointment, than I ever could.

  56. April Pettefer says:

    I saw Zechariah’s doubt as a form of self-protection. He was afraid of hoping, of believing and being crushed yet again. So he tried to protect his heart. I’ve done the same thing, and I even heard my 17 year old daughter say she couldn’t get excited about youth camp because the first two camps had been cancelled and she couldn’t risk being hurt again.

  57. Diana Fleenor says:

    REBEKAH C: I appreciate your words about the overarching emphasis on the faith of the believer in the Word of Faith movement. The belief there seems to discount the power and sovereignty of God like it has been brought out here in this story. I do believe faith in all of us needs a kind of strengthening, yet, if all the burden was placed upon me to even exhibit faith without wavering at all, I would be crushed under the load. But the Lord Jesus knew we can’t carry these burdens alone, we need him to shoulder it with us as we take upon his yoke and learn from him. Though he does rebuke “little faith” (e.g. Matthew 6:30; 8:26; 14:31; 16:8; 17:20), Jesus is infinity more gentle and humble than the Word of Faith teachers!

  58. Diana Fleenor says:

    What I receive as conviction and comfort today is the two-fold reality of weak faith which needs rebuked and strengthened, alongside with the truth that God’s purposes can never be thwarted. As Zachariah experienced the discipline of the Lord “because [he] didn’t believe [Gabriel’s] words,” the promise was not taken away! Even as Gabriel spoke of the muteness to be given Zachariah, he stated clearly the words of promise he spoke “will be fulfilled in their time.”

    I can relate this to the promise of salvation, receiving the righteousness of Christ and have at this very moment peace with God because of the faith given to me. Yet, I, like Zachariah, can have wobbly faith as I face the promises of God in the midst of the long-term prayers. The delays in fulfillment can make me start to wonder, “Maybe it’s really not for me.” But, then I see in my suffering places where the Lord is doing with me the same thing he was doing in Zachariah — building faith! May when our mute mouths have been opened and our faith is strengthened, we be filled with the Holy Spirit to praise the Lord for who he is and what he does!

  59. Carey says:

    Exactly what I needed to hear today. I have struggled believing that God is “for me.” Dealing with a long list of unanswered prayers it seems like God is silent. But I also know that I also have a lot to be grateful for. I am trusting that God will give me hope as I wait on him.

  60. Angela Mihalcin says:

    Having struggled with infertility for several years, I really resonated with today’s study. It was the encouragement I needed to continue praying that God will provide us with a child!

  61. Meredith Ashley says:

    Christina F. – I love your comparison! While Zechariah struggled to believe an angel, Hannah had faith to believe a mere man. A man who had insulted her, no less! Wow.

  62. Lissa says:

    Thank you Nancy S. I needed to be reminded of that. I am praying for you Cristina S. I have been in your exact situation. Trust, prayer, and faith my daily companions.

  63. Churchmouse says:

    Can we just sit and embrace our human-ness for a moment? We’ve all been in a similar circumstance to Zechariah. We’ve prayed long and hard and yet we waited. And waited. And waited. We stirred our faith time and time again. We went to the tabernacle, the altar, and pleaded our case. Then the answer came and we almost forgot to say thank you. We almost didn’t grasp the magnitude of the moment. Oh aren’t we, Zechariah and us, all too human? And may I remind you, Jesus knows. He took on our flesh and chose to be as we are and feel all the feels. It’s not a sin to question. It’s not a sin to become weary. I don’t see Zechariah’s faith as weak. I see it as human. He hasn’t given up. He was at the temple, worshiping. Worshiping while waiting and wondering is a good way to meet God. Ask Zechariah. He’d tell you.

  64. Alexis says:

    “Zechariah’s weak faith did not weaken God’s power. His doubt didn’t stop John, the forerunner to Jesus, from being born. When your own legs of faith start to wobble, take courage, because nothing can stop the plans of God.”- Love this!
    Nothing can stop the plans of God.

  65. Carol. Brooks says:

    Through prayer and petition God hears the cries of His children, AND He answers in His time. Hallelujah!

  66. Mari V says:

    I have felt my legs wobble. I have trembled and immediately started praying for an answer. Most recently on Friday when facing the Judge in a court. And just like Zacharias weak faith did not weaken God’s power (love these words Erin). God and God alone gave me the strength and the power to answer the Judge with the words that only HE could give me. As for the Judge?
    He was impressed with my answer, and honored it! To God be the glory!

  67. Lizzie says:

    Romans 8:28
    Lord, please give me faith. To trust what you say, you’re good and your love is great. My life is yours. Thank you for promising to be with me forever.
    Please help me stand strong even when the plan is unusual. Like an army with pots and torches, I will stand for you and worship you!
    Thank you for those words “which will be fulfilled in their proper time.”

  68. Monie Mag says:

    I love the story of Zechariah and Elizabeth, it’s one of my favorites. I so want to sit one day and hear the story from Elizabeth herself. I see Gods great love and power in this story. That His plans move forward no matter what. I don’t know why but I find humor and so much love in this story. I picture Elizabeth not even realizing her husband can’t speak for hours after he returns because she has so much to tell him and requests of what needs to be done now that he’s home. I see Zechariah immediately realizing he doubted the living God, but also realizing how much God loves him and is working His plans for mankind. Now he had to listen to Elizabeth since he was silent. No wonder he he praised God first thing when he could speak again! Just joking but I can feel the joy these two must have shared after a long stretch of a sadness not having a child. No matter what God is good and he is for us. Raise a hallelujah!

  69. Taylor says:

    “You’re just not that powerful.” A quote I heard from my church’s Bible study leader during our study in Esther. When we we worry and fight to control situations in our lives (which I am SO guilty of) it’s almost comically comforting to remind myself “you’re just not that powerful.” Like Erin said in the devotion “Zechariah’s weak faith did not weaken God’s power.” I really needed that today as I’m in the midst of trying to finish grad school and get a job before the end of the year (Lord willing).

    Another quote that came to mind after reading this devotion was from the trust series we just finished here on SRT from Day 3 “Even if not, He is STILL GOOD.” Such hard words to say when you’re in the season of waiting that feels like it’s never going to end. It’s hard to be positive when things just aren’t going your way. When you surrender your will to the Lord’s will and can utter this phrase “even if not, He is still good.” WOW what faith that takes. This phrase has been another comfort when I start to stress myself out thinking about things in the future I want/feel the need to take control of. I am working on resting in His plan for my life, not my own.

  70. Sarah D. says:

    This is such a comfort. I can’t ruin the plans of God. He is ultimately always in control. As I go into senior year of college, there’s going to be a lot of unknowns that leave me wobbling. But I know God will be with me through it all. What a faithful God we serve, who never leaves our side. Thank you Lord!

  71. MARTHA HIX says:


  72. Christina Fowlkes says:

    The juxtaposition between Zachariah’s reaction and Hannah’s reaction is powerful. Zachariah heard directly from an angel, yet still doubted. Hannah heard from a priest, a mere man, and went away smiling. God’s will prevailed regardless (thank you Jesus) but it’s just interesting seeing the difference between immediate doubt and immediate faith

  73. Nancy Singleton says:

    My weak faith does not weaken God’s power! And nothing can stop the plans of God! Powerful insights.

  74. Christine Salinas says:

    I really felt myself struggling in my faith yesterday. My daughter and son-in-law are in the Army. For months they were in separate duty stations to get their training. Then my daughter started to change her mind about how she felt about her husband. Never less, God chose to still put them in the same duty station. My SIL was supposed to go to South Korea, but then Covid hit and that got changed. Now they are at the same duty station and I really want, and I know that God wants, for them to stay married. I don’t think that is how it is going to turn out. And I am broken about it. I’m hurting about it constantly, even though I remember that God is in control and that whatever He wills, will happen. I struggle to pray for it now, having resolved myself to the worst. This is a terrible place to be because it shows that I’m losing hope in God. I feel like Zechariah, “how can I know that you have a plan for them when everything is falling apart and nothing seems the way it should?” I’m praying for the Lord to remind me to seek Him even if I am full of doubt.

    1. Nancy Singleton says:

      I understand your pain, having been through this with my own children (3 of our 6). We can only walk our own faith journey-not that of our adult children. The hardest prayer for a parent is “Lord, I trust you to use WHATEVER it takes to bring my child into a saving relationship with you, & into a strong faith walk.” Leave the details to Him.

    2. Moriah Leeds says:

      Christine, I see you, I hear your hurt and my heart is heavy for you. If I feel this way, how much more does God feel for you. I listened to this song soon after reading your words and I felt compelled to share it with you. “Find You Here” by Ellie Holcomb. Praying for you this morning.

  75. Jessica Nicolas says:

    Thank you Lord cause .y weak faith at times does not stop you from the promises you have for me and my family. Thank you. Because I will see all the promises you’ve spoken in their time. Amen! ♡

  76. Rebekah C says:

    Isn’t it interesting that the word of faith movement places all the responsibility upon the believer, but when it is God’s plan, you cannot stop what God has ordained?

    If we approached suffering this way, healing, life in general, nevertheless not my will but your will your purpose be done how different we would look at the outcome, whether it’s what we want or not, that God has a purpose and to be ok with it.

  77. Megan Huskey says:

    We prayed for 18 months before conceiving this child in my womb. I became

  78. Erika Anderson says:

    Zechariah does not believe and the angels response is “Listen”. How I wish I would be silent and listen to God’s voice and plan rather then talk back or question. Today, I will listen, learn, be quiet and wait for His voice.

  79. Melissa Miller says:

    I pray. I ask. But I do find that I hold back in actually believing my prayers will be answered the way I am looking for. I relate with Zechariah. I would definitely ask “How can this be?” Or maybe more of “Why now?” We know why for Zechariah and Elizabeth. But it is still difficult in my everyday life to immediately respond with the faith that my good, generous, Heavenly Father is at work. Praying for my faith to be strengthened to flow into immediate praise rather than it being a process.

  80. Jessica Kooiman says:

    Take courage!

  81. Melissa Graves says:

    I am reminded that God’s plans for me cannot be thwarted by any earthly thing. As Erin Davis so aptly observes, “…we can read Zechariah’s story and find hope. Zechariah’s weak faith did not weaken God’s power.” Do I hear a collective “HALLELUJAH” sisters? Such sweet encouragement from the pages of God’s Word! Example after scriptural example assures me of this solid truth and buoys my confidence in the fact that I can rest in the sovereignty of my God and Savior. Despite any appearances to the contrary, He is always in control and working all things together for my good! HALLELUJAH!

  82. Deanna says:

    How I struggle in my faith at times. I’m a natural-born control freak and have such great difficulty placing faith in God at times. Lord, I believe… help my unbelief. Mark 9:24.

  83. Christine Smith says:

    How is Hannah’s story related to Elizabeth and Zechariah? Because they were both praying for children?

    1. Lindsay Graham says:

      I think so. I read both of these passages and was caught by how much God sees our pain and deepest desires. These are two examples of Him letting His people finally be blessed with them. Even if that never happens for me, I take comfort that he hears me and is working all things in my life for His glory as well.

    2. Melonie Nelson says:

      I think it is here because Zechariah would have known this OT story and that should have strengthened his faith, knowing that God had answered another who had prayed for a child.

  84. Jessica VanDerNoord says:

    There is strength to be learned through silence. Taking away all other distractions to focus on what God was trying to teach Zechariah. That God is faithful and works on His own time. Though we may see it as a punishment, it may have actually been exactly what Zechariah needed. As soon as he was able to speak the first thing he does is praise God. Not complain or be angry, but worship the Lord for His faithfulness. That is powerful.

  85. Blessed Beth says:

    I love this line –
    “When your own legs of faith start to wobble, take courage, because nothing can stop the plans of God.”
    I am going to write this in my journal and place it on my prayer wall!
    God is so faithful in giving me scripture and quotes to encourage me and inturn others everyday, as long as I am faithful in listening.

    1. Jane K says:

      Hi Beth, I’ve heard people talk about a prayer wall before, but I’m curious, how you do this? I’ve heard of people using a closet wall with sticky notes. I like the idea of having my prayers visible so I can pray throughout the day.

  86. Ana says:

    Zechariah’s weak faith did not weaken God’s power . Amen

    1. Ashley Richtarik says:

      Yesss!! Love this!