Elizabeth: The Mother of John the Baptist

Annaliese Raynak

Who is Elizabeth in the Bible?

Elizabeth appears in Luke 1, and her story is an example of faithfulness in God’s plan and His timing. Elizabeth and Zechariah faithfully served God for many years. In fact, they were both found to be righteous in God’s eyes and were careful to obey his commandments. However, Elizabeth was unable to have children, which was a deep source of pain.

As they grew older and their chances of having children grew dimmer and then nonexistent, Elizabeth believed that she would never be relieved of her plight. One day when Zechariah was serving in the Temple, he was chosen to enter the sanctuary. While in the sanctuary an angel appeared to him and told him that God had heard their prayers. Elizabeth was to bear a son, and he was to be named John.

Zechariah couldn’t believe his ears, and due to his unbelief, he was unable to speak until his child was born. Elizabeth was overwhelmed with joy and believed in the kindness of God. Her cousin, Mary, would go on to give birth to the Messiah, and her son John would prepare the people’s hearts for Jesus’ arrival.

Elizabeth’s blessed child

Elizabeth had traded her hope for a more realistic picture of life. Part of her worth as a woman was tied to her ability to have a child, and she was unable to conceive. She had longed for a little one who could carry on her husband’s name and bring joy back to her eyes.

Time passed, and she found herself beyond childbearing years without a baby to call her own. She and her husband Zechariah had faithfully served God with righteous hearts for many years. They both cried out to God and prayed for a child.

Yet even though they remained loyal and reverent to God, their prayers remained unanswered. They must have wondered why God was withholding this blessing from them. Elizabeth and Zechariah eventually gave up hope since they knew that they were both too old for their dream to come to pass. Or were they?


Mom playing with son - Christian Healthcare Ministries


Like Elizabeth, we may have given up hope in our dreams. Perhaps we prayed to be a mother, a job promotion, a new house, or the restoration of a relationship. Waiting for weeks, months, and years can wear down even the most steadfast heart. We can commit our lives to God’s work and serve him faithfully, but things just may not work out as we planned.

“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.” – Luke 1:13 (NIV)

God gives us the desires of the heart

When we don’t receive our dream when we think we should have it, it can be incredibly frustrating. Our hearts hurt when we see others accepting what we think we deserve, and we cry out wondering where we went wrong. Maybe we’ve even given up and believed that our dreams could never possibly come to pass due to our circumstances, health, or position in life.

However, it’s important to remember that God doesn’t operate on our timetable. We can take heart knowing that He sees the bigger picture. He’s still weaving the tapestry of our lives, and he will not leave the table until it’s completed.

Our aching hearts matter to the one who carefully crafted our dreams. While those dreams may not occur in the way we think, or when we would like them to, God calls us to awaken our hope and place our trust in His plans. Elizabeth gave up all hope that her dreams would come to pass.

Naturally, there was no way she could ever have a son, so she believed that her life would never be redeemed. However, even when all hope was lost, her miracle arrived. Her child was blessed with a divine purpose and even went on to pave the way for the long-awaited Messiah.

When only God could cause it to come to pass, she received the desires of her heart. Today we can believe in His goodness knowing that even if our dream doesn’t come in the form we expect, or in the timeframe we desire, He still holds us.

We can trust in His strong, infinitely tender hands. He hasn’t forgotten about us or left us to pick up the pieces on our own. As we look to Him, He restores our hearts and leads us down the right path for our lives.


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Annaliese Raynak

Annaliese is a storyteller whose passion and purpose is to help others connect their stories to the grand narrative God planned for all creation. Weaving a tapestry of words, she aims to highlight the ultimate source of Truth and help individuals discover their God-given value.

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