34.1 – Devotion

Have you ever heard the phrase “Expect the unexpected”? Things happen in our lives when we least expect it. The idea is that you should always be ready for something to happen. This would’ve been good advice to give Zechariah or Mary before the angel Gabriel told each of them that they would have a child. Zechariah and his wife were old and weren’t expecting a child. Confused, Zechariah reacted with doubt. Mary was young and unmarried; she definitely wasn’t expecting a child either. She was also confused, but she reacted in faith.

We might react to God’s plans in similar ways. We are excited about answered prayers and immediately rejoice. Other times, we’re not so thrilled, or just plain confused. We might ask God “How?” like Mary and Zechariah. In these cases, it might feel like God isn’t even listening to our prayers, much less answering them. But the truth is, God always listens to our prayers. He knows what we need better than we do.

God’s plan for our lives is far greater than anything we could ever expect. God puts His plan into action through Jesus and John. In fact, it is the greatest plan ever—the plan of salvation for us all! Through Jesus’ death and resurrection, we have all been given eternal life.

  1. Do you think Mary and Zechariah were surprised by the angel? Why?
  2. How should we react to God’s unexpected plans? Like Zechariah or like Mary?
  3. Have you ever had a prayer answered differently than you thought it would be? What was it?

Let’s pray:

Holy Father, thank You for the gift of new life through children. Please be with all parents and their children, including our family. Help us to trust in Your plans and to be ready to follow You wherever You lead. In Your name we pray. Amen.