Good morning, New Women. I've been thinking about the way you are kindred spirits to each other, even though most of you have never met. It feels like a Holy Spirit thing to me, which leads us straight to Mary and Elizabeth's visit . . .
TODAY'S EMBER: "And why has this happened to me, that the mother of my Lord comes to me?" (Luke 1: 41-44)
TO PONDER: Before we unpack this, let's make sure we're all clear on what's happening here. The minute Elizabeth hears Mary's greeting (you'll recall from yesterday that Mary has gone with haste to be with her cousin, her kindred spirit), the child leaps in her womb. This is no ordinary six-month fetus giving his mom a quick inside kick. The baby leaps, as if for joy. And then, Scripture says, Elizabeth is "filled with the Holy Spirit" and like Mary and now Joseph, she KNOWS that Mary is carrying the Messiah, the Savior they have been waiting for for centuries. Mary hasn't even said a word beyond "Hello." It's doubtful the news of her immaculate conception has reached Elizabeth's town in the hill country. She -- and her baby -- just know. Sometimes you just do, don't you?
But here's what I want us to focus on. Here's Elizabeth experiencing a miracle of her own. Way past the childbearing years, "barren" for decades, she's six months into a pregnancy with a child who has an impressive God-directed job in front of him. And here comes young Mary and SHE (a) has been impregnated by the Holy Spirit, not a human and (b) the baby she's carrying is the Lord himself. Way to come in and upstage Elizabeth, Mary. But Elizabeth doesn't see it that way at all. She is immediately humbled and says, "Why has this happened to me?" How am I good enough to be the one she comes to? I've done nothing to deserve such a blessing, and yet here it is. Do you have friends who celebrate your victories when they have their own? Are you that kind of friend -- without jealousy or competition, especially when it comes to spiritual growth?
FAN IT TO FLAME: Humility is a huge part of any relationship. We have to get ourselves out of the way enough to recognize God in other people, even if it means not being the more godly or the first, the best, the star. Do you have a friend or an older relative who is farther along on the spiritual journey than you are in some way? Can you see God in her? Does she embody Christ? Are you jealous of that -- or can you simply be honored by her love and humbled by the opportunity to learn from her? Take that opportunity. And know it was meant to be.