And Mary Said, “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. 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.” Luke 1:46-49
One of the problems of having heard the Christmas story so many times is that we all know how it turns out. God is coming in the flesh, to walk among us, in the person of Jesus. And my worry is that we have heard it so many times, that we only half listen and only half hear the magic and the mystery of all that transpired in the months and weeks leading up to the birth of Christ.
So, I like to go back and reconnect with the people who played such an important role along the way in God’s plan. For example, I imagine the scene, as it must have unfolded in Elizabeth’s house the day the then pregnant Mary visited her. Upon seeing Mary, Elizabeth’s own baby jumps for joy inside her, causing Elizabeth to exclaim with a loud cry, “Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb.” I imagine the two women hugging and crying, sharing notes about pregnancy and wondering at the miracle of it all.
And it is so wonderful that Mary can’t help but burst out in song in the middle of Elizabeth’s living room. “My soul magnifies the Lord and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior.” She sings for Elizabeth and Zechariah, for God and for herself. She sings for Gabriel, who first gave her the good news and for everyone who will benefit from the news – for the proud and powerful who will be humbled, for the hungry who will be fed, for the rich who learn that money cannot buy you love, and for anyone who ever thought that God had forgotten the promise to be with us forever, to love us forever, and to give us fresh and endless life forever through his Son. Now that is something to burst out in song about!