Monday, December 12, 2016

Music of Advent - Blessed be the God of Israel

Week 3, Monday—Luke 1:68-79

Blessed be the God of Israel by Michael Perry, 1973

My father was 47 years old when I was born.  I can only imagine the conversation between he and my mother.  “We are going to have a baby, I’m pregnant.”  “You’re what!”  Of course, ‘how did that happen’ is an in appropriate question, but often a thought.  I can’t imagine my coming was expected.  There was probably a bit of “we’re past all that now.  We have teenagers for Pete’s sake!”  In spite of my parents age or how much of a surprise I must have been, I never doubted my parents love for me.  While not expected, I was nevertheless a joy.

I would imagine that Zechariah had similar thoughts at the pronouncement of the angel that left him literally speechless.  The billion and one reasons why the thought is madness, the worries, the fears, the feelings of inadequacy that go through the mind in a split second.  Then at the end of the second of scrolling worries, comes a flash of shining thought—pure joy!  

Zechariah waited silently through the term of Elizabeth’s pregnancy.  At the moment of the birth of John, and his writing down the name of the child, he was delivered from his silence and began to speak.  What did he say first?  He praised God, then he began to sing “Blessed be the God of Israel!” 

May we all sing for joy at the good news of the Christ child.  Praise God of all people, because he has come and has brought salvation to the people of God.  We are saved from darkness and death, and God will guide our feet to peace.

By the tender mercy of our God,
   the dawn from on high will break upon us,
to give light to those who sit in darkness
and in the shadow of death,
   to guide our feet into the way of peace.’
Luke 1:78-79

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