Both of them were upright in the sight of God, observing all the Lord’s commandments and regulations blamelessly. Luke 1:6 (NIV)
We could be contemplating for the first time the seriousness of whether or not there is a God. We could also be considering whether or not we would even want to get to know Him if He does exist. Although these questions are sizable and could carry the weight of our placement in eternity, could we choose not to tackle those great questions just yet? Not to be lazy or push anything off but to observe a little how the story unfolds. We could edge up in our chair and soak in the information. Could we choose to take an active and interested disposition to what God conveys to us? Would that be an intelligent way to approach the story of Jesus? Might that place us in a better position to make the more important decisions? Would some enlightening facts and concepts prepare us better in our choice to embrace or reject what the Lord is offering us?
If we have decided to read on into the story of Jesus´ walk here on earth, then shall we set the scene? Shall we for the moment set that question of God aside and observe how His true worshippers react to His movements? Luke tells us that in the time of King Herod there was a couple who were descendants of Aaron. They were dedicated to the priestly mission of serving God and His people. It was important for them to conduct themselves as if God was watching them in every moment. They wanted Him to be pleased with them.
Have we all known some religious people who were also very strict in the way they conducted themselves? Is it possible for people who believe in God to get overly worked up about the right and wrong actions? Can men sometimes worry more about sin or righteousness and forget to be nice people? Could they somehow have gotten things turned around? Could they be doing a set of actions they like to think are pleasing to God without looking at the situation from God´s point of view? Could they have forgotten that God has always wanted us to be WITH Him in a loving relationship? Might they be overlooking that God is Love!
Shall we thank the Lord that cold actions are not what God is seeking? Can our hearts be warmed when we recognize people who truly offer up their daily life to sharing God´s love and returning it to Him? Do we get the impression through Luke that this couple was serving their own ego? Or could we get the impression that they demonstrated their devotion to their Lord by lovingly looking to Him and reflecting that love to others?
When we consider where we are going to place God in our hearts, is it encouraging for us to hear of others who loved Him before? Could we take heart to think that God moved powerfully in their lives? Might we conclude that it is possible that it was because of this couple´s sincere hearts and caring attitude that God chose to touch them with His blessing?
Dear Lord, as we approach the story of Jesus, please let our hearts be warmed with the genuine show of love and dedication. It is far too easy to lose religion in a series of rules and actions. Help us to realize the size of Your heart. Impress upon us the warmth of Your Presence. Let us take heart when we read of others who experienced You because of their genuine and sincere love for You. As we turn to consider You now, allow us to sense the love You have shown unto us. Do this we pray, so that we too may possibly be able to return some of it unto You.