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Session 7

The surprising benefit of being honest about your doubts

Read: Luke 1:5-25, Luke 1:57-66

Whether or not we want to admit it, we have all been doubters at one time or another. We want to believe God will make it happen, but the circumstances of our situation overwhelmingly point to “No.”

If that’s you, you’re not alone. Zechariah was a doubter, and he eventually became the father of Jesus’ cousin, John. The same John who became John the Baptist and paved the way for Jesus’ ministry on earth. 

All signs pointed to “no” for Zechariah and Elizabeth to give birth to a baby. Their prayers for a child had resulted in old age and empty arms. So when the angel showed up to tell Zechariah Elizabeth would be pregnant, he understandably had some questions (Luke 1:18). 

Zechariah was bold enough to let the Lord know he had doubts, but he wanted to believe. So Zechariah confessed his doubt, and God used it to grow his faith.

Imagine this —  Zechariah sat in silence as he watched his wife’s belly grow for nine miraculous months of pregnancy, and the only person he could converse with about it with ease was God. We can only imagine God used that time to bring Zechariah into a closer relationship. 

It’s not that God calls us to be certain, but to act faithfully in the face of uncertainty. 

It’s not that God calls us to be certain, but to act faithfully in the face of uncertainty. And that’s what both Zechariah and Elizabeth did. When the time came to name their baby, they didn’t flinch. God told them his name would be John, and that’s what they named him (Luke 1:59-63). 

Zechariah and Elizabeth were faithful to listen to God, confess their doubts, and when it came time to act in obedience, they did.

Reflect: 

  • What does Zechariah’s life show you about God’s patience and love for us even in our doubt?
  • Have you ever doubted God in the past, but eventually seen Him at work in your situation? 
  • Is there an area in your life where you doubt God now? Have you told Him?

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