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We see broken people becoming whole, through the love of Christ.To build a community in which to belong, grow and serve. To love our neighbours by helping them overcome spiritual and physical needs. To contribute to Spirit-filled transformation in the city of Guelph.

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A Long Awaited Promise 

03-12-2017

Have you ever had to wait a long time for something? I’m not talking about waiting in line to renew your passport or driver’s licence. I mean waiting a long time!
Megan, at age 4, is starting to realize it’s a long wait to Christmas!  It’s another 22 days and she’s already getting impatient. She knows something good is happening soon.  We started celebrating Advent with her on Friday, which she had been looking forward to, but she thought Advent was “right before” Christmas. When we told her on Saturday that Christmas was still 3 weeks away, she said, “I don’t like Advent any more. I just like Christmas… when I get stuff.”
Waiting a few weeks can feel like a long time. But have you ever had to wait for something for a really long time? I mean, like years?
Have you ever had to pray for something for a long time?  Maybe you’ve been praying for a spouse for a long time.  (Either praying your spouse would come to the Lord or praying to actually have a spouse!)  Maybe you’ve been praying for a child (same prayers).  Maybe you’ve been praying for healing. I know we have people in our congregation who have been praying for healing for a very long time. I can only imagine it gets really discouraging!
I’ve been the pastor at Priory for just about 14 years now. For pastors, that’s a long time! Average is only 3-5 years.  So 14 is a long time to be at a church, waiting and watching as God works in the church and in the lives of the people there. But honestly, 14 years is not a long time in God’s terms.
At the time of our passage today, God had not spoken to Israel through a prophet or an angel for 400 years! [Norval Geldenhuys, Luke, p. 60]  Most people in Israel still believed God was meeting people’s needs, and active in the land, but through other means. They didn’t believe God was still revealing himself through revelation. [Darrell, L. Bock, Luke, p. 34] After all, it had been 400 years! (Interestingly, this was also roughly the time Israel spent in Egypt before the Exodus!)
When we read the Bible, because it is a collection of the highlights of God’s activities in bringing his redemptive purpose to fruition, we get to see the prophets and angels all packed closer together. It is easy for us to miss the fact that decades and even centuries pass between these events!  So imagine Zechariah’s surprise when he encountered an angel in the temple!

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Filetype: MP4 - Size: 81.96MB - Duration: 33:43 m