Mary and the Magnificat
Much thanks to David Pawson for a message he gave, over 40 years ago, in a little church in Guilford, England, that began this meditation for Kristianna.
As we remember the birth of her son, we have felt a sweet invitation from the Lord to meditate on His mother during the holiday season. There are so many reasons to study the life of Mary. She had perspective on the glory and beauty of God, as well as amazing intimacy in relationship with Him. She had perspective on the story, on the incredible narrative of love that she was caught up in.
Crack open your Bibles, or your smart phone, and read Luke 1:46-55
1. The Shared Joy of Women
As we looked at Mary’s story, we felt the Holy Spirit pointing out this dear reality: Take time to relish and thank Him for the love of the women in your life. There is something absolutely precious about sisterhood, be it biological or not.
Kristianna has always struggled with being guarded; it takes her time to forge deep friendships. So it is a wonder and a joy to her that she has some of the sweetest relationships with women EVER. She has girlfriends who are worth their weight in gold. They share their hearts, pain, and joy. They encourage one another. They disagree with one another. They carry on late into the night. They’ve held one another’s hands through births, miscarriages, addictions, deaths and divorce.
If you have ten amazing friends or just one, remember their faces and praise the Lord for them. Jesus loves women and He loves our special bonds to one another. He loves the unique way that we relate to Him, both on our own and when we’re all together.
Take a minute to imagine Mary and Elizabeth, dancing and shouting and rejoicing in a little stone house in the middle of nowhere.
Within the bodies of those two women the whole future of the world was held.
And neither of them should have been pregnant! (An old woman and a virgin teenage girl. Two miracles!) Both women were so excited! They recognized in each other the incredible mighty hand of the God to whom nothing is impossible.
As women, we get to relate to the beauty of friendship that was shared between Elizabeth and Mary, as well as that amazing moment of sharing fellowship with the Lord.
2. When the Spirit Falls
How many of you have had those moments? When you’re with your girlfriends and WHOOM, suddenly Jesus makes Himself known and you’re catapulted into a whole other dimension of activity!
It was in the middle of this precious moment with Elizabeth that the Holy Spirit falls on Mary and she bursts out with this incredible song, expressing in the Holy Spirit her part in the story and WHERE OUR ATTENTION should be. She expresses a message that upholds us during Christmas and throughout the whole year.
Mary was FULL of praise for this mighty God! “He HAS done great things for me!” she declares. As she praises God, revelation comes to her, like ripples, in larger and larger circles. She starts by thinking about what has happened to her personally, then socially, then nationally. And all of this is because of something taking place within her body.
Her hymn of praise enlarges her view of God! MAGNIFY THE LORD! (This means to “Get a bigger and bigger view of God!” ) It’s a great thing that has happened! For her! For her society and nation! For the whole world!
GET A BIGGER AND BIGGER VIEW OF GOD!
Ask the Lord to show you who He is, who you are because of who He is, who your family is, your city, your nation, in light of who He is and what He has done for us. Ask Him to bring you into His story for exactly where you are right now in time, in history, in this world.
3. The Honor of the Lord
In the Magnificat Mary declares, “For He has magnified me.” She’s aware of the fact that she’s the most famous woman in history, but not because of anything that she’s done but because of what He’s done for her.
Mary states something extraordinary that brings us into the story: “Anyone who honors Him He will honor.”
It is not her merit that she pinpoints, but the MERCY OF GOD. She has reverenced and feared Him, but it is His MERCY that causes His blessing to come. As she feels the holy privilege she wants to honor God and include everyone in her experience. (That is Mary’s first reaction! The Holy spirit is filling her with such a beautiful, unselfish response to the fame that God has brought her.)
Friends, the words of Mary are still true today. In His MERCY he says, “If you honor me I will honor you. My Name is holy and if you fear it, I will pour into your life.”
As Mary gets a bigger and bigger view of God she starts to praise Him; so often this is what worship does. As Mary praised God, she saw that God remembered His promise. She saw the hopes of a whole nation being fulfilled through what was happening in her own body.
It’s a marvelous conception.
At this time of year we can get so focused in on the details, caught up in the minutiae and the headaches and the pressure. Take time to Honor the Lord and allow Him to show you your part in the story. Get a bigger and bigger picture of God! Allow Him to fill your heart with the wonder and awe of His love for those around you, for the whole world. His mercy is fully available to each and every one of us, today, and tomorrow, and the day after that. Make space in your heart for Him to show you where His mercy applies to you today.