The Mary of Luke’s gospel was no fearful wall flower. This was a woman of Israel who understood the dire situation her people were in. The good news announced by the angel Gabriel was water to a parched community. Mary’s joy at the news cannot be contained. Her song voiced the desperate pleas and clinging hope of her people.
There are so many desperate voices crying out in this world today. I think of war-torn Aleppo that has suffered for years. I think of the black community whose young men are dying and imprisoned at what seems to be an inequitable rate. I think of girls and women imprisoned by human trafficking with little hope for deliverance. As I prepare for a warm, cozy, love-filled Christmas with family and friends, I remember those voices. I pray for their deliverance. I pray that God will send to them a word of hope like the one young Mary received on behalf of her people.
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. 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. 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.” And Mary remained with her about three months and then returned to her home.