“My soul magnifies the Lord, and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior, for he has looked with favor on the lowliness of his servant.” (Luke 1:46b – 48a)
I was undecided as to which passage to use; this one or the actual psalm passage, Psalm 146:5 – 10. I decided to go with the Luke passage. I hesitated because in years past . . . . well, to be honest I felt the need to defend Mary’s spontaneous joyful chorus from commentators who do not/did not believe that Mary (a young woman) would and could compose such a moving testament to the Divine. I have looked at this passage from both sides of the exegetical fence. But lately I have just let things be what they are. And allowed myself to simply get caught up in Mary’s joy.
She has traveled to her cousin Elizabeth, who herself is unexpectedly expecting a child. Elizabeth greets her with joy and anticipation, and I am sure Mary felt relief that someone sees that something wonderful has and will happen.
“Surely, from now on all generations will call me blessed; for the Mighty One has done great things for me, and holy is his name. His mercy is for those who fear him from generation to generation. He has shown strength with his arm; he has scattered the proud in the thoughts of their hearts. He has brought down the powerful from their thrones, and lifted up the lowly; he has filled the hungry with good things, and sent the rich away empty.” (Verses 48b – 53)
In Mary’s exuberance she brings the past forward to the present, and calls to mind the waiting that God’s called and chosen people had to do to come to this point. And, actually, Mary reminds me a great deal of myself.
if you, beloved reader, entered into Mary’s joy and felt that the
Divine has done great things for you? Would you feel joyful? Can you
see where the Divine has helped you, in fulfillment of promises made
long ago, and perhaps very recently? Would you not express your joy?
Perhaps more eloquently because the joy comes not from human will but
“He has helped his servant Israel, in remembrance of his mercy, according to the promise he made to our ancestors, to Abraham and to his descendants forever.” (Verses 54 – 55)
We are coming to the end of the third week of Advent. The time is drawing closer. I do not know if it was the placement of Thanksgiving in the calendar, but this year Advent does not seem to be the long weeks away that it has been other years. And as one of the more commercial Christmas jingle goes, “we need a little Christmas right this very minute!” Moreover, we need the Son of God! Selah!