In those days Mary arose and went with haste into the hill country, to a town in Judah, and she entered the house of Zechariah and greeted Elizabeth. And when Elizabeth heard the greeting of Mary, the baby leaped in her womb. 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.”
- Luke 1:39 – 45
I find it interesting that shortly after Mary learns that she will be the mother of the promised Messiah, she heads out for a three-month visit with her cousin Elizabeth.
There is very little detail given to these three months of waiting and preparing. Perhaps the two women prayed together as they worked around the house. Maybe Elizabeth’s many years of life provided needed wisdom and comfort to a startled but brave Mary. Possibly they took long walks in the morning to ponder God’s word to them as their babies grew inside of them. We really don’t know what they did. But we do know that what they did they did together.
I think there is a message in this for us. As we wait for Jesus’ second coming, we need to be with other people. Yes, our relationship with God is important, but it isn’t good for us to wait alone. We need to hear voices tell us of our blessedness. We need to be reminded that when we enter the room, joy fills someone’s heart. We need encouragers to inspire, mentors to offer wisdom and friends to ponder the promises that seem too good to be true.
You and I cannot make it very far alone. The night is too cold. The burden too heavy and the wait too long to endure. So today, do three simple things.
First, make a commitment to open yourself up to others. Like Mary, go with haste into the hill country of friendship and community. Choose vulnerability over hiding. Embrace life in community over waiting alone for Jesus, the light of the world, to return.
Second, quietly sit today and thank God for the friends who wait with you, who remind you of God’s promises to you, who challenge you to be all that God has called you to be and who accept you at every step along the way.
Finally, in your own way, thank the people who are waiting with you. Like Elizabeth does to Mary, tell your friends and family that their presence blesses you and fills you with joy.