THE FUTURE BECKONS
Sovereign Lord, you are the God of my waiting, the basis of my hoping. Come, O come, Emmanuel. I long for you.
Read LUKE 1:39-56
Mary Visits Elizabeth
39 At that time Mary got ready and hurried to a town in the hill country of Judea, 40 where she entered Zechariah’s home and greeted Elizabeth. 41 When Elizabeth heard Mary’s greeting, the baby leaped in her womb, and Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit. 42 In a loud voice she exclaimed: “Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the child you will bear! 43 But why am I so favored, that the mother of my Lord should come to me? 44 As soon as the sound of your greeting reached my ears, the baby in my womb leaped for joy. 45 Blessed is she who has believed that the Lord would fulfill his promises to her!”
46 And Mary said:
“My soul glorifies the Lord
47 and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior,
48 for he has been mindful
of the humble state of his servant.
From now on all generations will call me blessed,
49 for the Mighty One has done great things for me—
holy is his name.
50 His mercy extends to those who fear him,
from generation to generation.
51 He has performed mighty deeds with his arm;
he has scattered those who are proud in their inmost thoughts.
52 He has brought down rulers from their thrones
but has lifted up the humble.
53 He has filled the hungry with good things
but has sent the rich away empty.
54 He has helped his servant Israel,
remembering to be merciful
55 to Abraham and his descendants forever,
just as he promised our ancestors.”
56 Mary stayed with Elizabeth for about three months and then returned home.
New International Version (NIV)Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.
ReflectHow do you react when you hear good news? Are you as glad when it is for other people as when it is for yourself? Ask God to bless you with an open and grateful heart.
As lockdown gradually lifted here in the UK, people couldn’t wait to be back with their family members. I’m sure there were often scenes of intense emotion – much like we witness here between these two relations.
Mary had braved a long, hard journey into the hills (v 39). She must have had a real sense of acceptance and being in the right place when she finally arrived. Here are two women separated by age but united by being family, brought even closer through the miracles God was performing in their lives. What conversations they must have had, the coming together of the enthusiasm of youth and the wisdom of age!
This is no ordinary greeting. Both women are filled with God’s Spirit (see vs 35,41). They would be as one in the belief that the long-promised salvation for their nation is on the way. Mary’s wonderful words of praise quote Scriptures that she will have been familiar with all her life. We too are better equipped to hear God’s Word to us if we are already familiar with the way he speaks.
Ponder anew what the Almighty can do, Who with His love doth befriend thee’*. Give thanks for special people in your life who are always there for you. Allow words of praise to our wonderful God to spill from your heart.
Dear Lord, I am reminded today that I am to share the provisions you have given me with those who are less fortunate. I am reminded too, it is more blessed to give than receive.
*’Praise to the Lord, the Almighty,’ Joachim Neander 1680
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