Wednesday, December 20

Luke 1:46-55

Mary’s Song of Praise

46 And Mary said,

“My soul magnifies the Lord,
47     and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior,
48 for he has looked with favor on the lowliness of his servant.
    Surely, from now on all generations will call me blessed;
49 for the Mighty One has done great things for me,
    and holy is his name.
50 His mercy is for those who fear him
    from generation to generation.
51 He has shown strength with his arm;
    he has scattered the proud in the thoughts of their hearts.
52 He has brought down the powerful from their thrones,
    and lifted up the lowly;
53 he has filled the hungry with good things,
    and sent the rich away empty.
54 He has helped his servant Israel,
    in remembrance of his mercy,
55 according to the promise he made to our ancestors,
    to Abraham and to his descendants forever.”

Reflection

When Mary visited Elizabeth, she had plenty of reasons to be afraid. She could have doubted the Lord. Instead, Mary rejoiced and gave thanks. This year has undoubtedly been full of reasons for us to be afraid. Shootings, bombings, misconduct, abuse, brutality, earthquakes, fires, hurricanes, floods. It is more than enough to cause us to doubt that everything is under control. As I read Mary's words, I must pause. Mary knew that God had it under control. He always did and always would. I do not want to minimize the fact that this world is chaotic. I want us to reflect and to notice that as these tragedies occur, we can rejoice in the Lord as we pray for those who are affected. When we pray, God can ease our fears and anxieties. He can heal and comfort those who have been afflicted. When we rejoice, we can find strength in our Lord and use that strength to help others. Though we have plenty of reasons to be afraid, let us use Mary as an example. Rejoice and gives thanks, for you have been blessed.

Prayer

God, we thank you for your providence and control in our lives. You have blessed us richly. We pray for healing in our world, and that you would comfort those whose wounds are still fresh. We pray for newness and revival. In Jesus' name, Amen.

Written by Sam Neahring Director of Children and Family Ministries sneahring@stjohns-springfield.org