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Silence, time to reflect

March 2, 2022

Daily Scripture

Luke 1:1-25

During Lent, we are using short videos to share a daily idea (linked to the gospel of Luke) on how to grow spiritually. Watch today’s video. Click here or on the image below:


Note: We are reading the entire gospel of Luke in the GPS. Some day’s readings are longer than usual. We hope you’ll have an extra cup of coffee, or use your lunch break, and read Luke’s entire story of Jesus.

1 Many people have already applied themselves to the task of compiling an account of the events that have been fulfilled among us. 2 They used what the original eyewitnesses and servants of the word handed down to us. 3 Now, after having investigated everything carefully from the beginning, I have also decided to write a carefully ordered account for you, most honorable Theophilus. 4 I want you to have confidence in the soundness of the instruction you have received.

5 During the rule of King Herod of Judea there was a priest named Zechariah who belonged to the priestly division of Abijah. His wife Elizabeth was a descendant of Aaron. 6 They were both righteous before God, blameless in their observance of all the Lord’s commandments and regulations. 7 They had no children because Elizabeth was unable to become pregnant and they both were very old. 8 One day Zechariah was serving as a priest before God because his priestly division was on duty. 9 Following the customs of priestly service, he was chosen by lottery to go into the Lord’s sanctuary and burn incense. 10 All the people who gathered to worship were praying outside during this hour of incense offering. 11 An angel from the Lord appeared to him, standing to the right of the altar of incense. 12 When Zechariah saw the angel, he was startled and overcome with fear.

13 The angel said, “Don’t be afraid, Zechariah. Your prayers have been heard. Your wife Elizabeth will give birth to your son and you must name him John. 14 He will be a joy and delight to you, and many people will rejoice at his birth, 15 for he will be great in the Lord’s eyes. He must not drink wine and liquor. He will be filled with the Holy Spirit even before his birth. 16 He will bring many Israelites back to the Lord their God. 17 He will go forth before the Lord, equipped with the spirit and power of Elijah. He will turn the hearts of fathers [or parents] back to their children, and he will turn the disobedient to righteous patterns of thinking. He will make ready a people prepared for the Lord.”

18 Zechariah said to the angel, “How can I be sure of this? My wife and I are very old.”

19 The angel replied, “I am Gabriel. I stand in God’s presence. I was sent to speak to you and to bring this good news to you. 20 Know this: What I have spoken will come true at the proper time. But because you didn’t believe, you will remain silent, unable to speak until the day when these things happen.”

21 Meanwhile, the people were waiting for Zechariah, and they wondered why he was in the sanctuary for such a long time. 22 When he came out, he was unable to speak to them. They realized he had seen a vision in the temple, for he gestured to them and couldn’t speak. 23 When he completed the days of his priestly service, he returned home. 24 Afterward, his wife Elizabeth became pregnant. She kept to herself for five months, saying, 25 “This is the Lord’s doing. He has shown his favor to me by removing my disgrace among other people.”

Daily Reflection & Prayer

“Because there were [an estimated 18,000] priests, special duties had to be assigned by lot…. This occasion was likely Zechariah’s only opportunity to perform this service during his lifetime.” * The angel’s message to the aged priest was clearly worded to remind him of the words of the prophet Malachi (cf. Malachi 3:1, 4:5).

  • Had Zechariah and Elizabeth given up hope? No—the angel said, “Your prayers have been heard” (verse 13). God’s messenger said Elizabeth would bear the child they’d prayed for. But Zechariah struggled to believe that “good news” (verse 19). Do you ever feel as though God won’t ever do anything good in your life? How can you make hope a solid foundation for all of life?
  • “When Zechariah saw the angel, he was startled and overcome with fear” (verse 12). Zechariah’s fear nearly blocked the angel’s “good news” (verse 19). Yet the angel said, “Don’t be afraid, Zechariah” (verse 13). “Don’t be afraid” is the most common command from God and God’s messengers in the Bible. In what part(s) of life do you most need the message, “Do not be afraid”?

It’s Ash Wednesday! Resurrection will have special services to mark this day at all physical locations, and at, at 7p.m. Central Time. There is also a noon service and a 6:15 p.m. family/children oriented service at the Leawood location. Join us to begin your Lenten journey of transformation.

Click here to listen to music from the COR Worship Collective.


Lord God, you know how often doubt and fear tug at my heart. Send your message of hope and promise across my path, reminding me to trust and not to fear. Amen.

GPS Insights

Picture of Jen Schultz

Jen Schultz

Jen Schultz serves as one of our pastors in Connection and Care. She graduated from Saint Paul School of Theology in May 2021, earning a master of divinity with an emphasis in Wesleyan Studies.

Having a passion for walking with the marginalized, Jen also serves our Kansas City homeless population, those who are suffering food crisis, and multiple recovery organizations.

She is married to Jon and the proud mother of three young adults.

I often asked myself why the book of Luke would begin with the story of Elizabeth. It was only when I began to experience the gift of Christ’s hands and feet through my brothers and sisters that I began to understand what a gift Elizabeth was to Mary! We are not meant to experience life alone. So we experience the season of Lent as a community of people who long to grow closer to God.

Lent begins with Ash Wednesday (today) as we take an honest look at ourselves and begin the process of transformation. The ashes demonstrate not only our human state of sinfulness, but more importantly, our desire to repent. It is by acknowledging who we are that we can embrace who we can be.

An important turning point in my spiritual life came when I embraced the truth that God loves us with an overwhelming love none of our sins can erase. In the light of God’s love, I was able to find the courage to look honestly at who I was. I had to be willing to be rigorously truthful in my self-examination. We may have heard it before…”We are as sick as our darkest secrets.” We must realize we are not so unique that God has never seen our dark secrets. In this place of self-awareness, as we face the totality of who we are, we present ourselves to God.

After admitting our sinfulness, we humbly ask God to remove our defects and cleanse our soul. As a community, we rejoice in knowing that through God’s mercy, Christ died in our place, allowing us forgiveness instead of the punishment we would otherwise deserve. Only God’s transforming love can renew our lives. It is in Christ we receive God’s love for us and our freedom of choice to accept this gift. And what a sweet gift it is as we interlock our hands, united in God’s family.

© 2024 Resurrection: A United Methodist Church. All Rights Reserved.
Scripture quotations are taken from The Common English Bible ©2011. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

* HarperCollins Christian Publishing. NIV, Cultural Backgrounds Study Bible, eBook: Bringing to Life the Ancient World of Scripture (Kindle Locations 232061-232065). Zondervan.