“Isn’t is a wonder…that the mere presence of the divine destroys our sinful selves and all we thought defined us, but that the Word of the divine consoles us, relieves us, forgives us, and raises us up again?” –Walter Wangerin, Jr
This morning I was ushered into the trembling glory of the Lord through Zechariah’s encounter with the LORD when he was offering the evening incense. I marvel at how another person’s story can move me, especially when told by a seasoned storyteller like Walter Wangerin, Jr. He sets the backdrop of all the time leading up to this moment in Zechariah’s life, carrying us along with expectation to the unexpected encounter with the glory of God. This scene is even more poignant when you think that God had been silent for 400 years up to this point in Israel’s history.
The first words spoken through God’s messenger were “Do not be afraid, Zechariah; your prayer has been heard.” (Luke 1:13 NIV) Words of comfort, calling him by name and answering a long sought after desire.
Just at the right moment, God reveals himself to us. And as we revisit the Christmas story this year, let us not miss the fact that divinity intersects humanity in a way only God could imagine.