Zechariah asked the angel, “How can I be sure of this? I am an old man and my wife is well along in years.” The angel said to him, “I am Gabriel. I stand in the presence of God, and I have been sent to speak to you and tell you this good news. And now you will be silent and not able to speak until the day this happens, because you did not believe my words, which will come true at their appointed time.” Meanwhile, the people were waiting for Zechariah and wondering why he stayed so long in the temple. When he came out, he could not speak to them. They realized he had seen a vision in the temple, for he kept making signs to them but remained unable to speak. (Luke 1:18-22)
I thought my writing was great. After all God was writing a novel through me. How could it not be? Then I discovered my writing was close to horrible. Yes, God is giving me a great story, but He put a bump in my road. While I’ve been learning how to write, He has taken me on a journey to renew my mind, to let the Holy Spirit change my spirit. God has blessed me through this journey.
Because I’m a writer, it jumped out that Zechariah is out of character in this story. Zechariah was a priest his whole adult life and observed all God’s commands and decrees blamelessly, and now he doesn’t believe God’s overpowering angel? It’s clear to me that God put a bump in Zechariah’s road, a bump necessary to complete God’s purpose. Zechariah’s inability to speak, the consequence of his unbelief, caught the attention of all the worshipers outside the temple, creating a gossip chain. God doesn’t need social media for marketing. Many have been drawn to the miracle and life of John the Baptist. Repentance leads to blessings.