There are certain people in this world that glow with the Holy Spirit. Just being in their presence fills your soul and encourages your faith. If you’re blessed enough to know a person like this, you know exactly what I’m talking about. I imagine Elizabeth was one of those people.
Mary was young and unmarried. We can imagine raised eyebrows and whispered judgement as the news of her pregnancy spread. I can’t help but think that it was very lonely.
Then Mary travels to see Elizabeth. And when she reaches Elizabeth, instead of judgement and shame, she is greeted with spirit-filled joy. What a relief and an encouragement it must have been to Mary. To not only be welcomed – but to be looked upon with honor for the powerful work God was doing through her. The bible doesn’t detail much of their conversation but what is included in the gospel is a beautiful exchange between women of great faith.
And Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit, and she exclaimed with a loud cry, “Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb! And why is this granted to me that the mother of my Lord should come to me? For behold, when the sound of your greeting came to my ears, the baby in my womb leaped for joy. And blessed is she who believed that there would be a fulfillment of what was spoken to her from the Lord.”
And Mary said, “My soul magnifies the Lord, and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior, for he has looked on the humble estate of his servant.
For behold, from now on all generations will call me blessed; for he who is mighty has done great things for me, and holy is his name.
And his mercy is for those who fear him from generation to generation.
He has shown strength with his arm;
he has scattered the proud in the thoughts of their hearts;
he has brought down the mighty from their thrones
and exalted those of humble estate;
he has filled the hungry with good things,
and the rich he has sent away empty.
He has helped his servant Israel,
in remembrance of his mercy,
as he spoke to our fathers,
to Abraham and to his offspring forever.”
I wish scripture talked more about the months they spent together. I want to hear more of what they talked about and how they spent their time. I want to read about the way they prayed together. I want to sit with Elizabeth like Mary did and hear her testimony. I want to learn from them both.
Elizabeth was expecting her first child, just like Mary. She didn’t yet have experience in raising children of her own. What she did have was a whole life worth of experience in trusting God’s promises. She let God use her to encourage Mary and God can use us to encourage each other, regardless of what we might feel disqualifies us.
I pray that I can be more like Elizabeth. That I can use my life experience and my testimony to raise up and encourage young mothers. That I would be quick to tell stories of God’s faithfulness and that the Holy Spirit would shine through me as a light for others.
I also pray to be more like Mary. To be a person that seeks out women of faith and learns from them.
And like both of these amazing women, I pray that the praise of God would always be on my lips.
Abundantly More: Knowing God and Making God Known.
Oh, magnify the Lord with me, and let us exalt his name together! Psalm 34:3