Wednesday, 14 December 2016

Tell Out My Soul

'Tell out my soul the greatness of the Lord' - so begins the Magnificat in English - that powerful song of Mary's in which she looks forward to the birth of the baby Jesus. Barbara Brown Taylor's "Mixed Blessings" is a book of sermons, one of which focuses on this great passage.

Mary must have been so surprised at what was going on. "The whole scene was so strange - the angel, the whiteness, the voice like bells - she is not even sure it really happened." This is scary stuff - except that God is with her - a worthwhile lesson for us also to learn.

Mary's song is a song that she sings in the light of having received God's blessing. "She has been embarrassed and afraid, the most miserable of the miserable, but God has blessed her in her low estate, has made her a promise she believes, and that is the living definition of faith, faith that gives substance to our hopes, faith in things not seen."

This is an amazing picture - of the great "with their crowns flattened in the dust behind them, beggars dressed in brocade, cripples on white stallions." The radical things fall over each other as Mary seeks to put them into words. It's revolution. It's transformation. "She just wanted to be blessed in a small way, but she ended up changing the future of the world." When God gets involved, there is no telling what will happen!

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