Sunday December 13, 2009
For the Mighty One has done great things for me—holy is his name. His mercy extends to those who fear him, Luke 1:49-50
If ever a verse stood out as a bulwark against the uncertainties of life, this is it. Spoken by Mary as she waited the birth of her child, these words of great faith, were contrary to her experience up to that time.
Found with child before contact with Joseph her intended husband was a huge shame in that culture, far worse that the results of the shenanigans of our favourite golfer. All but her closest friends and family would shun Mary; a story of her impregnation by the Holy Spirit considered a joke or sacrilege. She probably kept that to herself, it would only make matters worse.
Even Joseph didn’t believe this story until it was confirmed to him in a dream. Then he was as supportive as any husband should be. But none of this shook Mary’s faith in the greatness of God, and especially the great things he had done for her.
But the greatness of God on its own is no comfort. Many great people exploit those dependent on them, and create greater misery than they could find on their own. Mary recognized it was God’s mercy allied with his greatness that was the source of ultimate security and comfort.
What she found, we can find. There is nothing in any world, now or hereafter, that can come between God’s care and us—except, of course, our own rejection of him. “For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.”
His greatness is awesome, far more than enough to meet all our needs.