Sorry for posting this early yesterday…
Mary Visits Elizabeth
39 A short time later Mary hurried to a town in the hill country of Judea. 40 She went into Zechariah’s home, where she greeted Elizabeth. 41 When Elizabeth heard Mary’s greeting, her baby moved within her.
The Holy Spirit came upon Elizabeth.
Imagine how Mary must have been feeling…
She’s been visited by angel, told she’s going to have a baby – difficult enough when you know you’re a virgin – but on top of that, this baby is God’s. How do you begin to get your head around all that?!
We will all have had news at one time or another that has shocked or surprised us, when we’ve wondered how we would cope, what we would do, what would happen to us – none of it compares to this, but we will know that when you are grappling with shock, it helps to have someone to share it with. This takes us back to day 6, and our need of community. I wanted to choose the same song, I’ll have to think again…
So Mary sets off to visit Elizabeth. Did she know of Elizabeth’s miraculous pregnancy? If she did, she would have known that Elizabeth was probably THE one person who would understand what was happening to her. The child within Elizabeth immediately recognises what God is doing – and great is the rejoicing.
These two women, who God has chosen to do something spectacular, beginning in them, live together and support each other in their awesome task.
Henri Nouwen points us again to the community of people who affirm, deepen and strengthen the work God is doing in and through us.
We all need those people. People who remind us, who affirm us, who stretch us, who support us. We need to be brave enough to seek them out, to trust them, to share with them, and allow them to speak into our lives. Or will we hold them at arm’s length and not let them in?
In turn, we also need to be available to be that person to others who need it.
Who can support you today? Will you let them?
Who can you support?
I thank you Lord,
that there are those that stand in my corner,
willing to support me,
to hold me up,
to comfort me,
and even to challenge me.
I thank you for their companionship,
and their faithfulness.
May I be ready and able
to accept what they offer.
I pray that in my turn,
I can be a faithful friend
to those who need it from me.
Give me strength,
give me grace,
give me sense,
This year for Advent, some friends and I are using Advent and Christmas Wisdom from Henri J. M. Nouwen. You’re welcome to join us on this journey. Feel free to comment here, or on Twitter using #adventbookclub