Day Two: John the Baptist

Luke 1:11-17 – Then an angel of the Lord appeared to him, standing at the right side of the altar of incense. When Zechariah saw him, he was startled and was gripped with fear. But the angel said to him: “Do not be afraid, Zechariah; your prayer has been heard. Your wife Elizabeth will bear you a son, and you are to call him John. He will be a joy and delight to you, and many will rejoice because of his birth, for he will be great in the sight of the Lord. He is never to take wine or other fermented drink, and he will be filled with the Holy Spirit even before he is born. He will bring back many of the people of Israel to the Lord their God. And he will go on before the Lord, in the spirit and power of Elijah, to turn the hearts of the parents to their children and the disobedient to the wisdom of the righteous—to make ready a people prepared for the Lord.

“Are we prepared for God and do we respond to his work through the One he sent to lead us to him? John will point the way. Do we take the path of sensing our need for God and of responding to the One who offers forgiveness to us? Are we humble before God, taking the path he calls us to, or do we opt to go our own way?

“John is someone whose dedication to God is expressed even in his lifestyle. That lifestyle, as reported to Zechariah, shows how totally focused John must be as he represents God. Filled with the Spirit from birth, he will testify to Jesus even by kicking in his mother’s womb (Luke 1:44). The presence of the Spirit in Luke is often accompanied by a powerful testimony. Those who are directed by God in the Spirit do not render testimony to God in the privacy of their own home, as the many Spirit-filled characters in the book of Acts will also show. If we have the Spirit, God will be manifest in both our words and deeds.” [Bock, Darrell L.. Luke (The NIV Application Commentary) (p. 53). Zondervan. Kindle Edition.]

Spirit-filled expectations are rooted in hearts prepared for God’s salvation, prepared to receive Him as He is – in His power, love, and holiness.

Worship: “Hearts Waiting” by Matt Redman – Link:

Prayer: Lord, I thank You for making a way for my salvation through Jesus, and for raising up the many lives who loved me and helped prepare the way for me to know Your love. May I thrive on Spirit-filled expectations today, seeking to live in such a Christ-magnifying way that my love and attitude prepare ways for those in my life to know You and receive Your love. In Jesus’ name I pray, Amen.

– TR