“When Elizabeth heard Mary’s greeting, the baby leaped in her womb; and Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit. And she cried out with a loud voice and said, “Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb! And how has it happened to me, that the mother of my Lord would come to me? For behold, when the sound of your greeting reached my ears, the baby leaped in my womb for joy” (Luke 1:41-44).
Elizabeth was a living testimony to a miracle. She and her husband Zacharias had longed for a child for decades, but as the years passed by, her season for child bearing passed with it. Yet God had not forgotten them. In His mercy, God sent Gabriel to prophesy they would conceive a child in old age, even though Zacharias had doubts.
They were to call the baby boy, John. He would bring joy and gladness to his parents and others. He would be great in God’s sight and bring many others to repentance. John would play a crucial role in preparing Israel to receive their Messiah. But once again, Zacharias had doubts…
While I am not aware of angels bringing declarations of miraculous births to mankind these days, we are certainly used to hearing the results of a doctor’s exam or the pregnancy test indicator turning blue to confirm a baby is on the way. Like Elizabeth and Zacharias, not all expectant parents WERE expecting a baby. It can be terrifying, stressful, and for some, inconvenient or embarrassing.
Yet, God has His plans and purposes. Jeremiah 29:11-13 states that, “For I know the plans that I have for you,’ declares the Lord, ‘plans for welfare and not for calamity to give you a future and a hope. Then you will call upon Me and come and pray to Me, and I will listen to you. You will seek Me and find Me when you search for Me with all your heart.”
Even when a pregnancy is not our plan, it is the Lord’s. He has a positive plan for the mother and the child. To enter into those blessings, the parents should call upon His Name in prayer. They should seek the Lord who promises to reveal Himself to those who ask, seek, and knock.
Zacharias was rendered mute until the baby was born. It was certainly a consequence of unbelief, but perhaps it was also a time for him to call upon the Lord and to seek His will. His willingness to raise the baby with the non-family name of John and as a Nazarite was a testimony to his trust in our Creator.
In the presence of a now miraculously pregnant Mary, the pre-born John leapt in the womb! The joy of a destiny intertwined with the Creator and Savior of all mankind is certainly something to get excited about.
If you or someone you know is expecting a baby, let them know that God already has plans for the child. The plans are for their well-being, not a disaster. The time is now for the prospective parents to call upon the Lord and seek His face. God will listen to them. They will find the Lord who loves, saves, forgives, and provides.
He has also provided people to help us. Remember, Mary sought out Elizabeth and Elizabeth was encouraged by Mary. All of our babies are blessed. God wants to bless the parents too.
Missouri Baptist Children’s Home is a strong advocate for the sanctity of all human life. We offer a number of ministries that care for young mothers (before and after birth) and their babies (born or pre-born). We also have Missouri State Tax Credit programs available that are specifically designed to support the Pregnancy Services of MBCH.