39 In those days Mary arose and went with haste into the hill country, to a town in Judah, 40 and she entered the house of Zechariah and greeted Elizabeth. 41 And when Elizabeth heard the greeting of Mary, the baby leaped in her womb. And Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit, 42 and she exclaimed with a loud cry, “Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb! 43 And why is this granted to me that the mother of my Lord should come to me? 44 For behold, when the sound of your greeting came to my ears, the baby in my womb leaped for joy. 45 And blessed is she who believed that there would be a fulfillment of what was spoken to her from the rd.”
The way I see it Mary’s calling was a costly blessing. She nearly lost her fiancé. She was quite likely alienated by family and friends, and became the talk of the town, her “pregnant by the Holy Spirit” story must have been hard to believe then as it would be now. We add to this experience watching the crucifixion of her son. Being “highly favored” by God was not the easiest road.
Being blessed isn’t always easy, but if we keep our focus on Jesus, we will experience the joy and fulfillment that only His presence can give us.
“And blessed is she who believed that there would be a fulfillment of what was spoken to her from the Lord.” - Luke 1:45
Notice in our reading that through Elizabeth, God reassured Mary that her faith was in the right place. When Mary learned Elizabeth was pregnant, she rushed to see it with her own eyes. Remember that Elizabeth was a recipient of a pregnancy and birth miracle herself. As soon as Mary arrived, Elizabeth’s baby leaped in her womb, and she told Mary, “God has blessed you above all women, and your child is blessed” (Luke 1:41-42).
Mary faced some big obstacles, but she experienced an even greater blessing. And though that blessing was disguised to the world for a time, Matthew 24:30-31 tells us her child was and will be revealed in glory.
30 Then will appear in heaven the sign of the Son of Man, and then all the tribes of the earth will mourn, and they will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory. 31 And he will send out his angels with a loud trumpet call, and they will gather his elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other.
It may be that your circumstances are less than “merry” at this moment, remember Mary’s story. Remember that God is always at work, and His plan for you is good.
No matter how gloomy your circumstances may seem, God has not deserted you. God is greater than our understanding, and He loves us more than we can fully grasp. I believe Isaiah 55:9 puts it best “For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.” That truth alone gives us a reason to celebrate.
What hurdles are you facing right now?
Are you focusing on your circumstances or the loving promises of God, who wants to lead you through them?
What is one practical way you can remind yourself of God’s love even when you don’t feel it?