When the time arrived for Elizabeth to have her child she gave birth to a son. Her neighbors and relatives heard that the Lord had shown his great mercy toward her, and they rejoiced. When they came on the eighth day to circumcise the child, they were going to call him Zechariah after his father, but his mother said in reply, “No. He will be called John.”…All were amazed.
Elizabeth breaks with tradition. There is nothing wrong with breaking traditions as long as they are human given and not God given. Our problems, our tears, our doubts and fears arise when we break with God given traditions.
I worry often about what others think of me. We all want to be liked. We all want to be respected, but at what price? A mom was just speaking to me this morning about an incident that occurred at their school. It turns out that a young student sold his brains, his reputation, his dignity and his worth for twenty dollars to an unworthy group of classmates. Why? Was it really to make money? Probably not. Most likely it was to be liked. We all want to be liked. We all want to be popular. Even when we are older, we like to be liked. It just seems to be a part of who we are. It might actually have something to do with our most base human instinct to survive. So we have it. So what? What will we do with it? Will we bend our will to others? Will we bend our morals for anything? Will we twist and turn, pull and push our bodies and faces so that we can be loved and wish ourselves away?
No, the parents and the school have an obligation to correct the problem. Christians have an obligation to correct society. This is a great teaching moment. Unfortunately, the teaching part never really seems to happen and all is swept under the carpet. That’s the real big problem. We keep on leaving the door open for worse and worse things to happen.
Cinderella lived in a glass castle and wore glass shoes. How beautiful. How amazing. How brittle. All it would take would be to throw one stone and damage it all. Throw the stone and the glass breaks. Throw no stones and the glass will last for a thousand years.
In many ways, this is what has happened to marriage, to our norms, our morals and our values. We have been chipping them away. One by one, they are vanishing. Even the beauty of marriage is no longer considered a must. The Dallas Morning News interviewed a few young people to get their take on marriage. They all agreed, “We don’t need it.” Unfortunately, the Dallas Morning News never interviewed a fifty-year-old or sixty-year-old living alone and with no children. I think they would have heard something totally different.
We are rebels. We want to fly but can’t. So we throw a fit and design a plane. And when the plane crashes we shake our fists and curse out God. Why? Why? Why? Does a tree complain that it cannot produce roses? No. We don’t seem to mind that we can only eat from our mouths. Men don’t seem to mind that they cannot bear a child. So why do we complain when marriage can only be between a man and a woman? Or that we can only have one man or one woman? Does Cinderella complain that she has to get home by twelve? No, not at all! She is simply content that she made it to the ball!!!
Elizabeth named her child John. Why? Because the Lord told her to, that’s why! Did she complain? Not at all. Why? Because John was her first and only child and Elizabeth was amazed and glad.
You can’t complain if you were never born. You cannot die if you never lived. These are the rules. Should we complain? No. If we are here, we were meant to be. Of course, so many others were meant to be, but they never appeared because some did not want to play by the rules.
O King of all nations and keystone of the Church; come and save man, whom you formed from the dust!