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Today is the fifth day I haven’t been able to speak. Five days of silence seems like a long time, but it’s nothing compared to the year that Zechariah was struck silent. Can you imagine? An entire year of broken communication, no laughter, sighs in place of words. But the most amazing thing to me about that story is what Zechariah says when his voice is restored:

“Blessed be the Lord God of Israel,
   for he has visited and redeemed his people
 and has raised up a horn of salvation for us…
to show the mercy promised to our fathers
   and to remember his holy covenant…
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 1:67,72,79)

Zechariah waited a year for his voice to return, he waited longer for his son to be born, and he and his forefathers waited even longer for God to deliver His promise of a messiah. And when those things finally came about, Zechariah was ready with a song of praise.

We’re all waiting for something. And I for one spend a lot of time picturing what life will look like when those awaited dreams become realities. But I’ve spent zero time thinking about what my response to God will be. Perhaps I’ll follow in Zechariah’s footsteps, spending this time of silent waiting preparing my heart to praise the one who faithfully keeps His promises. And perhaps I’ll get my voice back, too.