Scripture: Luke 1:5-25, 57-80
How many of you are familiar with the rubber band technique? You wear a rubber band around your wrist and when you are trying to combat anxiety you snap it against your skin.
It’s a physical reminder to reset your thoughts.
The angels in the Bible seem to function a bit like the rubber band technique. They show up and immediately the first thing they say is, do not be afraid. I can imagine in a less idealic recount, their statement might have even been accompanied by a slap across the face as if to say snap out of it. Be present. Get with God’s program. You are losing focus.
And let’s be honest. In Zechariah’s case – who wouldn’t lose focus. No one had heard from God for 500 years. How could anyone imagine something different at that point? They lived in a culture dictated by a different understanding of the world. They managed to maintain their religious identity - but I can imagine that after 500 years they can no longer imagine other possibilities. And even if they could generate a glimmer of something different in their imaginations – the idea of being able to make such a thing a reality must have seemed downright ludicrous.