My name is Zechariah. Nothing so remarkable there, as thirty Zechariahs before me are recorded in the Scriptures. But Zechariah means “Yahweh remembers,” and that seems remarkable to me, especially after...well, I’ll explain in a minute.
Despite the differences in their situations – the unlikely pregnancy of an old woman who bore the shame of barrenness for years and the completely impossible pregnancy of a young unwed virgin – these two women faced many of the same challenges as first-time mothers.
As a young girl growing up in the church, I was always encouraged to base my faith on Mary’s. After all, she’s the mother of Jesus. She’s the epitome of being used to bring the …
For Joseph, there is little comfort in store. He will take in a wife about whom others whisper. He will make a cross-country trek with this wife while she is large with child, walking while she rides a donkey, only to see her give birth to the child not only among strangers, but among animals in a stable—the only place that Joseph could find for her.
We’re told that people look at the outward appearance, but that God looks at the heart. I’m still only beginning to realize just how beautiful it is that our God doesn’t look at us the way we look at each other.
Western Christian subculture, and the rest of the western world, has traditionally measured people according to what they can do. More and more, we define people by how different they are and how uniquely they express their individuality. But our identity is not in what we own, what we do or what we can accomplish, or in what others think of us.