Following the angel Gabriel’s announcement concerning the baby Mary would have, he mentioned to her that “Elizabeth your relative has also conceived a son in her old age; and this is now the sixth month for her who was called barren” (Luke 1:36). So, off Mary went to visit Cousin Elizabeth.
An amazing thing happened as Mary “entered the house of Zacharias and greeted Elizabeth” (Luke 1:40). As she crossed the threshold into Elizabeth’s warm and welcoming home, the give-and-take of blessing and encouragement, of assurance and edification, of praying and sharing began.
As Mary entered, “when Elizabeth heard the greeting of Mary...Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit” (Luke 1:41), giving Elizabeth an extraordinary understanding of the situation. She greeted Mary with utmost joy and not a hint of skepticism...or jealousy!...about the working of the Lord. As the babe in her womb leaped for joy in response to the Holy One in Mary’s,
Elizabeth understood the response of her unborn child and acknowledged the great importance of the Christ Child whom Mary carried.
The illuminating work of God’s Spirit in Elizabeth’s heart led to discernment, insight, and Mary understanding about God’s will. Her quiet time alone with her God enabled her to believe in His amazing plan...and to rejoice!
Once Elizabeth spoke her greeting, it was Mary’s turn to worship the Lord. As she arrived at Elizabeth’s residence, this young woman—who pondered things in her heart and, in biblical accounts, rarely spoke (Luke 2:19)—opened her mouth and spoke from the abundance of her heart.
And what issued forth? Her rich words of praise in Luke 1:46-55 is a song known as the “Magnificat.” “My soul magnifies the Lord,” Mary began. And take note—the inspired words that followed contained 15 quotations from the Old Testament.
Clearly Mary had tuned her heartstrings to the heart and the Word of God! Indeed, her heart was saturated with the Word of God. Knowing God and knowing about His mercy, His provision, and His faithfulness to her ancestors, Mary sang! What was the content of her heart song? It was...
- A song of joy characterized by gladness and celebration.
- A song of substance drawn from the Scriptures.
- A song from the past reflecting Hannah’s song (1 Samuel 2).
- A song for today since God is the same yesterday and today.
- A song for eternity because God’s Word—where Mary’s song is recorded—will stand forever!
Knowing God and recognizing His infinite power enables you to join with Mary in her chorus of praise. Why not make Mary’s solo a duet? Spend a golden minute now reading her beautiful and joyful words. Then add your voice to her sweet melody and echo her praise: “My soul magnifies the Lord!”
The surest test of a heart is indeed the caliber of its speech—the quality of the words that issue forth from it. As Mary’s son Jesus would one day say, “A good man out of the good treasure of his heart brings forth good...for out of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaks” (Luke 6:45).
Surely you, too, desire to love God more deeply. Seek the sanctity of solitude and allow God to open your eyes that you may behold wondrous things from His law (Psalm 119:18) and His working in your life and in the lives of others. Such time alone with your heavenly Father does indeed honor Him, the Source of all the blessings you know.
Dear Lord, You are worthy of all praise. Guide me in carving out time to worship You. Amen.
Nurturing a Heart of Humility: The Life of Mary by Elizabeth George will help you discover how to:
- Sustain a humble spirit with overflowing prayer
- Hold God's assurances deep within
- Walk humbly through good times and bad with a heart fixed on God
What is the content of the song in your heart?
Have you praised Jesus today?
Seek the sanctity of solitude and allow God to open your eyes that you may behold wondrous things from His law (Psalm 119:18).