“In those days Mary arose and went with haste … and she entered the house of Zechariah and greeted Elizabeth. And Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit, and she exclaimed with a loud cry, ‘Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb! And why is this granted to me that the mother of my Lord should come to me? For behold, when the sound of your greeting came to my ears, the baby in my womb leaped for joy.’” (Luke 1:39a, 40-44 ESV)
It must have been odd for Mary to hear Elizabeth saying such things to her. “Blessed are you among women!” she cried. “Why is this granted to me, that the mother of my Lord should come to me?” As a young woman speaking to a respected elder of her family, Mary would expect to be junior—humble, helpful, even disregarded. I wonder if she felt uncomfortable?
But the joy overcame everything. “My soul magnifies the Lord,” she sang, “and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior.” He is the One who has turned the world upside down, making Mary the mother of Jesus. He makes elderly childless Elizabeth the mother of Jesus’ forerunner John. So together they look forward to a day when God will raise the humble and forgotten to places of honor—not through their own deserving, but through the salvation of Jesus.
Because it’s like this for us, too, isn’t it? Who are we, that our Creator should come into our flesh to be a human being and save us? Who are we, to become His relatives—to be the objects of His love—to be saved by His life and His death and His resurrection?
Prayer: Thank You, Lord, for honoring us this way. Amen.
* When have you felt uncomfortably honored?
* Why do you think God likes to turn things upside down?
* What does it mean to you, that you are Jesus’ relative?
Advent Devotions were written by Dr. Kari Vo.
Originally published in The Lutheran Hour on December 9, 2022 Used by permission from International Lutheran Laymen’s League, all rights reserved