Greetings. I’m glad you’ve returned. Tonight, I’m posting the next installment of Full of Grace. I’m over half way through the tale and my finish date/deadline remains Christmas – after all, what’s a nativity story without the holiday? In any case, look for the more postings in the upcoming weeks and just for a change of pace, check out my other blog, Crayons and Candy, linked in the sidebar. It’s a more personal blog, a journal of sorts and one that I hope will grow into something more. Until then, happy reading and thank you for stopping by.
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Back at home, Elizabeth pauses for a moment, leaning against a chair to catch her breath, as the household bustles around her, trying to get ready for the midday meal. Many more neighbors and friends had joined them since word got out that Zechariah’s voice had returned. Yes, they were there to gawk and gossip, but even that didn’t distract from the joyous occasion: a son from barren loins and a husband restored to her. G-d was indeed good.
Even in the noisy atmosphere, with Rona and Jesse boisterously throwing commands about, Elizabeth hears her niece’s voice. She looks to her right where the girl stands, her hands in front of her, her eyes filled with awe – the same awe Elizabeth feels. Mary is barely two months pregnant and still suffering from sickness due to the changes her body was going through, but Elizabeth sees something in her that wasn’t present when she first arrived. She can’t define it yet, but she knows it’s a good change. And in time, it would manifest itself.
“Dod said we are ready to begin,” Mary states.
“Good, good,” Elizabeth states, removing her apron. She sets it aside and joins the others at the table. She sits beside Zechariah, who holds their child in his arms. He meets her gaze and smiles. Elizabeth returns the smiles and listens as everyone quiets done. With their attention on Zechariah, they listen as he thanks everyone for joining them, for breaking bread with them and most of all for celebrating with him the miracles that G-d had given them.
A round of cheers goes up. Elizabeth proudly looks about her at everyone present. They would speak of this day for years to come and all because of the grace of their G-d.
Zechariah raises his hand to silence the guests and turns his head upward to speak the traditional blessing following the ritual of circumcision:
“G-d, help us to raise this child wisely. Give him strength and help him to grow up to trust in you and perceive you at the appointed times of the year. Thank you for the unhesitating hand of the priest who performed the circumcision to bring him into covenant with you. Send the Mashiac speedily and the Righteous Kohen, the prophet Elijah so that your covenant can be fulfilled with the re-establishment of the throne of King David.”
Cheers rise and the talking begins again – come talk of the miracle witnessed that day. Some speak of the future of the child John, what G-d had for him – surely if his beginning was that wondrous, his life had to be too. Still others spoke of the dumb Zechariah and barren Elizabeth as if they were still so. Elizabeth hears none of it, though. With one hand on John and the other on Zechariah, she quietly agrees with the blessing and says, “So be it.”