The prophet Zechariah is writing to the discouraged Jews trying to find their footing amidst the Jewish restoration from Babylonian captivity. They have since returned home to Jerusalem from Babylonia to complete the rebuilding of the temple.
They’ve been beaten on all sides. They are exhausted, emotionally weary, and their enemies want them dead. They are more than ready for their suffering to be over. Around this time, Zechariah received a word from the Lord that he shared with the people. This word promised the destruction of their opposers and a promise of hope...although this hope would not materialize for many years.
Remember, Jesus hasn’t been born yet, but in verse nine we see a familiar scene if you are acquainted with the gospels: “Rejoice greatly...see your king comes to you, righteous and having salvation, gentle and riding on a donkey, on a colt, the foal for a donkey.”
Rejoice greatly! In the midst of trials and fear, God redirects his children’s attention away from their circumstances and onto a great hope that he will send them one day, a hope of salvation and joy. This Christmas may not be how you imagined it. Perhaps there are family members who are missing from the table this year. Perhaps you are experiencing illness or personal stress.
Because he has lived, died, and risen again, just like the Jews hoped for his coming, we can hope in him this Christmas, no matter the circumstances.
Father, thank you for promising the coming of your King at a time when your people felt weary. Thank you for granting us the privilege of being among those who have seen this promise fulfilled by Jesus. Help us share our joy and hope with others throughout this Holiday season.
Throughout This Day: Thank God often for the gift of his humble eternal King, and ask him to guide you towards people who need to go from weariness to great joy and hope in him.
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