Dear Precious Friends,
It's the 1st day of December and we are starting our study of Luke Chapter 1. It is so wonderful to fill ourself with the word of God.. His absolute truth!!! It is so filled with rich teaching that I barely know how to pull out just a few scripture truths to talk about today. I am focusing on Mary and Elizabeth... and the reminder that Nothing Is Impossible with God! NOTHING!
The story of Mary is a stunning one. A young woman of no reputation or status is visited by an angel and informed that she will become pregnant, by the Holy Spirit, with the Son of God. She will carry in her body the Savior of the world, the King all of Israel has been waiting for. Just as amazing to me, though, is the proof Gabriel offers that such a thing is possible. Mary’s old and barren cousin Elizabeth is six months pregnant!
Elizabeth, unlike Mary, is a woman of standing and reputation. She is the wife of a temple priest and a daughter of Aaron, meaning her lineage, like her husband’s, could be traced back to him. Despite that, she did not and could not have children, which would have been a source of great shame for a wife in those days. But after many years, God, in Elizabeth’s words, “looked with favor upon” her and “took away [her] disgrace among men.” (Luke 1: 25)
If Mary had any concerns about the scandal or costs of being pregnant and unwed, she could look to her cousin—humiliated for much of her married life, but never left or forsaken.
Mary holds out courage. Being pregnant out of wedlock could mean death and at the very least.. shame and disgrace to her family... an outcast...
Elizabeth offers hope. One helps me face the mystery of a life with Christ. The other reminds me that because of Christ, my circumstances don’t have the last word; that even in the darkest places, I am seen and not forgotten in God’s story. Both women inspire me to greater faith.
It's almost as if the angel was saying, "How about a little help with that impossible faith, Mary? Check with your old relative Elizabeth. The impossible has really happened to her! She's pregnant!" God's great promises to his people often happened with miraculous conceptions that were beyond their experience and that stretched their faith. Mary was given assurance that God not only can, but he actually does, do the impossible in the lives of everyday folks. What does God want to do in you? How does he want to use you for his glory? Don't think it's possible? Ask Mary who first asked Elizabeth! NOTHING is impossible for God!
Father, shake loose my lack of faith and give me a heart of faith to believe in your ability to do great things through everyday folks like me. Give me the gift of faith to believe that you are doing great things through your people. Take me, mold me, and use me to your glory.
You have said that You would never leave or forsake me. Remind me daily that no matter where I am, You are with me, rejoicing over me, and calling me Yours.
In Jesus' name I pray.
Please share what spoke most to you in Luke Chapter 1!!!