Mary’s prayer–a “shouting” prayer
Comments on Luke 1:39-56
This is the first time John the Baptist “testified” of Jesus—in his mom’s womb! Talking about doing your job! He did it from before birth until his death and his witness still speaks to us today!
Maybe Mary worried how Elisabeth would respond. After all, she was not fully married and the neighborhood gossips were probably keeping the air hot.
This moment gives birth to one of the powerful prayers of the Bible. Mary’s response to John and Elisabeth’s testimony:
Luke 1:46 (NLT)
“Oh, how my soul praises the Lord.
How my spirit rejoices in God my Savior!
This is a shouting prayer. Mary begins by rejoicing. Our generation is so used to “diet joy” that we don’t always know how to rejoice in the Lord, which is the real thing. This is a joy that goes beyond a big promotion, winning the Super Bowl, or drug-induced joy.
Real human joy that comes from your spouse, your children and the good things of life are just a candle in the sunshine compared to this.
This is a joy that the Holy Spirit gives, one of the fruits of His living in us.
For he took notice of his lowly servant girl,
and from now on all generations will call me blessed.
Mary rejoices in what God’s work means to her. It’s not selfish to ask for yourself or rejoice in God for yourself. Jump in the water! Swim. Enjoy! I’m not sure that people were calling her “blessed” at that moment and from a human point of view it must have been extremely difficult.
But God provided a believing husband and Mary had the truth of God’s promise living in her womb. She believed and she rejoiced in some things that she hadn’t seen yet. Yet, she knew them in her heart.
The special thing about Mary wasn’t her physical beauty, but it was an incredible faith that accepted God’s promise and His calling to her. She was willing to hurt to get the blessing.
And she had a heart that pondered. She thought and meditated, mixing God into the recipe of her life and what was happening to her. Luke 2: 19, NLT says, “…but Mary kept all these things in her heart and thought about them often.”
For the Mighty One is holy,
and he has done great things for me.
He shows mercy from generation to generation
to all who fear him.
God’s goodness isn’t limited to certain BIG faith people in the Bible. His mercy touches all generations of those who fear Him.
His mighty arm has done tremendous things!
He has scattered the proud and haughty ones.
He has brought down princes from their thrones
and exalted the humble.
The big shots rig the system to favor themselves but when God fulfilled His Key Promise, he chose a humble peasant, someone hungry. From a human standpoint Mary must have felt herself poor and despised by “great” people. Yet, God chose her!
If we’re hungry for God and hungry to be used He will visit us. If we’re rich and have need of nothing, we’ll leave God’s presence empty-handed. Am I hungry or full as far as my relationship with God is concerned?
He has filled the hungry with good things
and sent the rich away with empty hands.
He has helped his servant Israel
and remembered to be merciful.
Mary sees this blessing for all Israel, not only herself. She grasps the significance of this baby in her womb and she’s amazed because she knows personally how miraculous His conception was.
For he made this promise to our ancestors,
to Abraham and his children forever.”
She knows that this is the Big One, the big promise of God. (Genesis 12 and also chapter 17). Finally. I’m sure even Mary didn’t understand at this time how world-shaking the promise was and how it would mean salvation for billions. But she had faith and God used her. She rejoiced in what she knew. You and I need to learn how to enter into the joy of His promise.
“Lord Jesus, I shout for joy because You’ve saved me and forgiven me from sin. You are faithful. My life has meaning because I’m in your plan until I come home to You. Help me to be a channel for your faithfulness and healing to others. I trust You Lord.”
Photo by Courtney Kammers on Unsplash