Luke 1:46-50 (New Living Translation)
Mary responded, “Oh, how my soul praises the Lord. How my spirit rejoices in God my Savior! For he took notice of his lowly servant girl, and from now on all generations will call me blessed. 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.”
Until now we had heard very little from Mary. She had accepted the angel’s pronouncement with incredible composure and confidence, and with remarkably few words. But now her spirit was unleashed, and she joyfully praised God. She celebrated that she had been chosen to be the conduit of this miracle. She rejoiced in the realization that God would use this child to rescue her people and the world. She was awed by the knowledge that a small-town girl like herself would be called “blessed” by the world forever.
But what does it mean to be blessed? According to The New Interpreter’s Bible, “Mary had been chosen, ‘favored’ by God. But what a strange blessing. It brought with it none of the ideals or goals that so consume our daily striving. Today many assume that those whom God favors will enjoy the things we equate with a good life: social standing, wealth, and good health. Yet Mary, God’s favored one, was blessed with having a child out of wedlock who would later be executed as a criminal. Acceptability, prosperity, and comfort have never been the essence of God’s blessing.”
Mary knew that God’s blessing is about far more than acceptability in the eyes of the world. It is about more than financial prosperity, more than physical comfort. It is about relationship with the Creator of the universe. It is about a life overflowing with joy. It is about peace and well-being. It’s about forgiveness and reconciliation and freedom and life eternal with the God of love. That is a blessing, indeed!
How have you been blessed by God’s love in your life?