This is what we see from Luke 1:5-25. We know that John the Baptist was to be forerunner of the Messiah. For Zechariah and Elizabeth to be the parents of John the Baptist there were certain ingredients of preparation in their lives for them to be used in God's will that made them usable. We can learn from these qualities, especially the last quality that Zechariah stumbled in.
Ingredients for preparation involve
1 Godliness (Luke 1:6) ~ Zechariah and Elizabeth lived godly and righteous lives. They obeyed the Old Testament. ~ Godliness provides the foundation for usability in the will of God. ~ The bible admonishes us to be holy also (1 Peter 1:15,16).
2 Adversity (Luke 1:7) ~ They were barren and had no child. In their culture it was unfavorable and embarrassing to be barren. ~ Adversity is the tool God uses to prepare us to be used greatly. ~ Adversity molds us into God’s image and if we respond to it properly it will deepen our relationship with God.
3 Serving (Luke 1:8-10) ~ Zechariah still performed his priestly ministry. ~ Though they had no child Zechariah still performed his ministry. ~ Sometimes people are tempted to withdraw and stop serving while they go through hard things. ~ Perhaps the serving while we endure adversity is the method God will use to bless and restore the brokenness in our lives.
4 Belief (Luke 1:18) ~ Zechariah didn't believe what the angel Gabriel told him about he and Elizabeth having a child ~ V26-36 speaks of Mary's response when the angel Gabriel approached her and told her she would be the mother of the Messiah. Mary believed. ~ When God approaches us with his plan may we believe Him
What kind of preparation is God is performing in your life?