One fear that can haunt us is the fear that we’ve missed an opportunity. The fear becomes even more acute when the opportunity we fear we’ve missed is an opportunity that we believe God has promised us.
That’s the fear the plagued Zechariah (Luke 1:5-13). He and his wife Elizabeth were both PKs (priest’s kids), they were godly people who were upright in God’s estimation. Zechariah was even chosen by God to offer the incense in the Holy Place of the temple. Yet one fear haunted Zechariah: he and Elizabeth were childless.
The Bible says they were well along in years; or as the King James Version more poetically says it, they were stricken with years. This literally means they had moved on… they weren’t in their prime childbearing years any longer.
Zechariah had almost pushed this out of his mind, thinking that he had missed his window of opportunity, when the angel showed up with God’s message to him—
Do not be afraid, Zechariah; your prayer has been heard. Your wife Elizabeth will bear you a son…. (Luke 1:13)
Did you notice this phrase: your prayer HAS BEEN heard? The verb tense really makes it say: The thing you used to pray for—the child you used to believe for, the pregnancy you used to try for—has been heard. But you stopped praying, you stopped believing, you stopped trying to get pregnant.
Zechariah let his fears speak louder than God’s voice. That’s why the angel called him by name. Zechariah means Jehovah doesn’t forget!
What has God promised you? Are you still praying for it? Still believing for it? Still doing what you need to do to see it happen? Zechariah needed to sleep with his wife. What do you need to do? Do you need to go back to school? Make a phone call? Setup an appointment?
If God spoke it to you, He has not forgotten you! Don’t believe the lie that the window of opportunity has closed!