In 1:6-7 we read two things about Zechariah and Elizabeth. They were ‘righteous before God’, that is they followed the law ‘blamelessly’, Zechariah was a priest who faithful served in the temple and yet they were childless despite being older. However despite their faithful service to God they lacked the one thing that would show his blessing on them to others. They were childless. Part of the God’s blessing on someone was seen in having children. This was in the eyes of others a ‘reproach’ (v25). Here we have two good people who have suffered disappointments.
There is no particular spiritual reason why they suffered this frustration. This was just a part of living in a fallen world. This particular disillusionment takes place over years. It is not something that we can go, at this point; this particular thing happened that was sad. It was just a slowly growing disappointment month after month after month.
Later we learn that God choose to use this particular disappointment for his purposes. He used Zechariah’s one and only time to offer incense as the time to announce he was starting a new visitation in Israel.
However during the many years of frustration they would not have known what was going to happen. It makes me wonder how I relate to people going through disappointments. Certainly God can come and intervene to sort out the frustration but if and when that happens we can never know.
It makes me wonder if I ever judge people who are going through disappointments as if they have brought this on themselves. It makes me wonder if I treat people less because they haven’t received some blessing that I have.