Thought for the Week 07/06/21
“Lilibet: God’s Promise”
“Both of them were righteous in the sight of God...” Luke 1:6
It seems that every new parent wants to have a unique name for their offspring. This involves care and forward planning. In the years to come, no one wants to call for their child only to find that every other four-year-old also has the same name.
Despite this, the names Olivia and Oliver still dominate the charts when it comes to the top baby names. Old fashioned names are also making a bit of a comeback. Inspired by the TV series Peaky Blinders new parents have been releasing little Tommy, Ada and Arthur back into the world.
Naming a child, is a major decision. Without a considerable amount of work, they will be stuck with this name for the rest of their lives. For parents struggling with such a major decision, and it took me 3 weeks to agree with Ann that our firstborn should be called Andrew, there are baby naming websites to assist.
No such assistance was required by new parents Meghan and Harry. The Duke and Duchess of Sussex announced the birth of their second child giving her the name Lilibet ‘Lili’ Diana Mountbatten-Windsor.
The name Lilibet means God’s promise. It is closed related to the Hebrew name Elizabeth. Elizabeth means God is my oath.
The start of the gospel of Luke is often reserved for pre-Christmas church readings. As we near mid-summer it is good to be reminded that Christmas is coming. It’s even better to recall the story of Elizabeth. Elizabeth was married to Zechariah who belonged to the priestly division. We are told that they were both righteous in the sight of God, observing all the Lord’s commands and decrees blamelessly.
In other words, Zechariah and Elizabeth would make perfect parents.
There was only one problem.
They were childless because Elizabeth was not able to conceive.
And they were both incredibly old.
The problem presents a problem that has an insurmountable barrier.
How could this old couple ever hope to have a child?
In this opening section to the birth of Jesus narrative Luke notes two things about Elizabeth and Zechariah.
First, they faced a huge, painful problem that appeared with each day to have no hope of a solution.
And second, this couple kept faithfully serving and obeying God.
Do we trust that God has a plan to deliver on his promises?
Zechariah and Elizabeth would have a child who was to be called John. The name John means ‘God has been gracious.’
John would in turn prepare the way for Jesus whose name means ‘The Lord Saves.’
Lilibet was our Queen’s childhood nickname and was used by her late husband the Duke of Edinburgh. The baby Lilibet is the Queen’s 11th great-grandchild and is 8th in line to the throne.
Today, may we not forget the promises of God.