Advent Day 11: Song of Praise

 Reading

Meditation

The song that Mary sings here is one of four that are recorded in the first two chapters of the book of Luke.  Mary’s song is commonly referred to as the “Magnificat” which is Latin for “glorifies.”  It is clear why this name is appropriate.
 
More than the appropriateness of the name, though, is the source of Mary’s content.  As she sings this hymn of praise, she pulls from the book of Psalm.  There are at least nine unique references to the Psalms in these verses.  Additionally, Mary references the books of Isaiah, Jeremiah, Habbakuk, and several other Old Testament sources.
 
When we read this, even at face value, it is a beautiful song of praise and thanksgiving.  Looking deeper at the content, I am always amazed at how the young woman that society would have seen as an outcast, would know such beautiful Biblical content.  Certainly, this could have been a Holy Spirit inspired moment; we shouldn’t discount that.  However, we also should not discount Mary’s Biblical understanding here either.
 
Drawing from this, we can and should be challenged in our own Biblical studies.  We live in an age where the Bible is more accessible than it ever has been.  Yet for many Christians, particularly in North America, Biblical literacy is at it’s lowest point in since things like this were recorded.  We often find ourselves unsure of what to say, how to pray, and even what to sing.  Worship songs have become repetitive and shallow.
 
Mary’s prayer is rich and full, informed and directed by Scripture.  While God invites us to “come as we are,” the invitation of Scripture is also to a much fuller and richer life.  One way this happens is through time spent reading and meditating on God’s Word.  As you consider your journey through the season of Advent, and the potential of the coming New Year, what would it look like for you to intentionally increase the time you spend in God’s Word?

 Prayer

Loving God,
You call us to Yourself, even when we are still Your enemies.
You welcome us into your presence, inviting us to come as we are.
Yet, in Your acceptance of us, You also love us enough
to call us to deeper and more dynamic transformation.
You came that we may have abundant life
and You have given us Your Word to grow us and reveal Yourself to us.
Help us to prioritize Scripture in our lives.
Make us restless until we find our rest in You.
In Jesus Name we pray, Amen.

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