Too often I look at the stories in the Bible and say, “I wish I could be like that.” And then every once in awhile I find someone who reacts the way I would. Today, I can relate to Mary. Soon after her visit from the angel she did something I can relate to: she ran.
Luke 1:39 tells us that Mary got ready and went in a hurry. Other translations read that she went with haste. In other words, she took off as soon as she could and didn’t look back. I imagine Mary was so unsure of what was happening that she went looking for answers. Looking for help. Looking for verification of what she heard. Anybody relate?
Sometimes when we find our self in a difficult situation we retreat. Or maybe look for advice. Or even signs that everything is going to be okay.
When Gabriel visited Mary he told her of Elizabeth’s pregnancy. Perhaps this was a nugget of confirmation God would give in order for Mary to be sure of her role. As a relative, it is likely Mary knew of Elizabeth’s inability to have a child. To see Elizabeth with child would only boast in God’s ability to do the impossible, and thus help Mary to find peace in her situation.
Whatever her reason for leaving so quickly, Mary found strength in her visit with Elizabeth. As soon as Mary entered Zachariah’s house the Spirit was working in Elizabeth’s womb. And the words of Elizabeth must have comforted Mary when she proclaimed, “Blessed is she who has believed what the Lord has said to her will be accomplished!” (Luke 2:45)
Mary’s response is a song of praise. Sometimes referred to as the Magnificat, her words of praise here are spoken in such a way as to magnify or shine light on what God had been doing in their time of waiting. Mary’s decrees recall the good God had done, the good he had promised to do, and the good he would be doing in her.
Whatever her reason for running, Mary was sure of one thing: the God who loved her was doing something good in her. Finding peace and solace in the midst of life’s chaos is exactly what Mary did during her visit with Elizabeth. The time away allowed Mary to gain strength and understanding that whatever reprimand was to come, whatever obstacles she would face, and whatever circumstances would bring, her God would go before her.
I want to be like that, too. Like Mary, who ran off quickly to get her head straight. She didn’t complain or try to run away from her assignment, but rather confirmed and praised God for it. I want to step back from my circumstances and prepare myself in Him so that when I step into His plan for me people will call me blessed, too.
I pray that this week we will step back from the busy world around us and prepare our heart and mind for His plan. Let us praise Him this week for the things he did in 2017 and for the things he will bring in 2018. May our souls magnify the Lord as we rejoice in our Savior.