An "Orderly Account"

A reading for Thursday, December 19, 2013: Luke 1:1-25

The writer of Luke sets out, according to the first chapter, to write an "orderly account" of all that had happened.  Zechariah and Elizabeth, says the text, were both "righteous" living an orderly life just as God had instructed them from the commandments.  As a Presbyterian, I certainly appreciate the way things in the story of Luke have been done "decently and in order" up to this point.  It is indeed a very "orderly account."

But then, suddenly there is a surprise.  There is an angel.  There is a message about what is to come.  Zechariah seems caught off guard.  How can this be?  Who am I to hear such news?  This is not in order.  This is out of my control...

Then there is chaos.  A priest that is unable to speak.  A name that doesn't fit.  He is delayed, and those that are gathered are perplexed when Zechariah can't tell them why.  Something has happened and it is utterly out of order.

Just when we expected an "orderly account" according to Luke, we are surprised by how out of control things can get when God and the Spirit of salvation is involved.  We know there is good news on the other side of all this chaos, but for now it's uncomfortable.  It's even unwelcome.

How about us?  Are we expecting an "orderly account" of our holiday season?  Are we enjoying "righteous" living just as God has instructed?  I wonder what surprises the angel of the Lord might visit upon us?  Are we open to that?

It's all pretty exciting!


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