And Mary said, “My soul glorifies the Lord and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior, for he has been mindful of the humble state of his servant. From now on all generations will call me blessed, for the Mighty One has done great things for me – holy is his name. His mercy extends to those who fear him, from generation to generation. He has performed mighty deeds with his arm; he has scattered those who are proud in their inmost thoughts. He has brought down rulers from their thrones but has lifted up the humble. He has filled the hungry with good things, but has sent the rich away empty. He has helped his servant Israel, remembering to be merciful to Abraham and his descendants forever, even as he said to our fathers. Luke 1 : 46 – 55
Do you ever feel on some days that you just don’t have any reason at all for praising God? I think we all have those days! Our spirits become so weary and burdened by the cares of life, by the challenges we need to overcome, by the circumstances of those around us, and by the constant turmoil and chaos in our nation and in our world. Sometimes it all just seems too overwhelming and hopeless, and there seems to be little reason for joy or praise.
When we have these days, perhaps we need a song. A song of praise to God. We need to take a breath and remind ourselves of all the many blessings we have been given – even in the midst of our circumstances. This is what Mary did. Immediately after the verses in which we read Elizabeth’s words to Mary about the blessing of carrying God’s Son, we see the title, “Mary’s Song”. And the above passage is her song of praise.
As we think about her life, it seems that she, too, must have felt burdened by her circumstances – experiencing the oppression of her people through Roman rule, living a humble and simple life with just the bare necessities, and then hearing the news about an unexpected pregnancy out of wedlock. There were so many plans in place, but in just a short time, everything had changed.
Mary understood the ridicule and shame she would have to endure going forward. She understood how difficult it would be for Joseph who loved her and wanted to make her his wife. Their world had been turned upside down, but yet, she knew their faith in God was strong. In her heart, she still had a song – her song – a very personal and heartfelt one – about all the great things God had done in her life, in the lives of those before her, and in the world around her. Believing in His goodness, she trusted and believed that He would continue to do great things in the future.
Mary came from a family of deep faith, one of worshipers and singers of God’s praise. They believed in God’s love and providence, and that He often intervened in people’s lives to do great things.
“Mary’s Song” is her beautiful and enduring legacy of hope for us. Even in her circumstances, she could still find reason to give her God praise. Her words are an expression of her thankfulness as she glorifies Him and His greatness. Her praise came from deep within – an abiding place where God lives and a place where she could always find reason to have hope in Him.
We, too, each need such a song of hope, praise, and joy. May our minds and hearts be filled with the memories of all the great things God has done for us, the love He has shown us, the goodness He continues to give us, and the assurance of His presence with us now and forevermore.
Dear God, what mercy and love you have shown us. Help us not to become so burdened by the cares of the world that we lose sight of your goodness and glory. Fill our hearts with a song for you. Amen