| Kailer Saxton reads Luke 1:46-56 | Sandy Lewis and Sara Hilton play Manger Medley | Ben shares a meditation on the state of Mary's world and God's peace |
Mary responded, “Oh, how my soul praises the Lord. How my spirit rejoices in God my Savior!
For he took notice of his lowly servant girl, and from now on all generations will call me blessed.
For the Mighty One is holy, and he has done great things for me.
He shows mercy from generation to generation to all who fear him.
His mighty arm has done tremendous things! He has scattered the proud and haughty ones.
He has brought down princes from their thrones and exalted the humble.
He has filled the hungry with good things and sent the rich away with empty hands.
He has helped his servant Israel and remembered to be merciful.
For he made this promise to our ancestors, to Abraham and his children forever.”
Mary stayed with Elizabeth about three months and then went back to her own home. [Luke 1:46-56]
There are many direct references to the Old Testament in these words spoken by Mary. It is clear she was well versed in God's Word and was looking forward to the promised Messiah like every other Jew.
Consider the reality of her people.
The Jews had been searching for their Savior for hundreds of years.
They looked for him when they were slaves in Egypt. They looked for him when they were conquered by Babylon. At this point they had sought him so long they seemed less concerned with being saved from sin and death and far more interested in him saving them from Rome.
Mary did not live in a democracy where freedom was the law of the land. Her culture was under the boot of Rome and Herod was a violent, evil man. It is into this reality she sings this song of praise. This is a young woman of intelligence, humility, deep faith and determined obedience.
Her national identity was marred by Roman occupation. Her personal identity was threatened by the risk of her husband’s damaged reputation. Yet, if she had any concerns for her betrothal to Joseph, or the uncertainty of her nation's future, it was eclipsed by her joyful surrender to the will of her God so beautifully spoken here.
This is a lovely example of God’s peace that passes all understanding.
Father, regardless of who is in power in our lives, whether it be a king, an emperor, a president, keep us mindful that it is You who are on the throne. Help us to live our lives in joyful surrender first and foremost to You. Eclipse everything else in our lives and give us Your peace, not from conflict, but in conflict.