Sunday, December 01, 2013

Blessed art thou

"And it came to pass, that, when Elisabeth heard the salutation of Mary, the babe leaped in her womb; and Elisabeth was filled with the Holy Ghost:
 And she spake out with a loud voice, and said, Blessed art thou among women, and blessed is the fruit of thy womb...And blessed is she that believed: for there shall be a performance of those things which were told her from the Lord.."

I think about the common use of the word "blessed".  And I think about Mary.

What was she facing? 

The gift of being called to bear and raise God's son.  

The challenge of carrying an unborn child that is God's son while betrothed to Joseph.  How must it have felt to carry that child when probably no one would believe your story of an angelic annunciation and divine conception and at at time when sexual infidelity meant fierce social ostracism at best and stoning at worst?

And the eventual experience of witnessing the crucifixion of her child.

Blessed means more that just things that give us new, glorious tasks, or make life more peaceful or help us solve our problems.  Sometimes being blessed by God means that, along with the peaceful things and hopeful things, our course will take us through experiences that will require absolutely every ounce of faith and courage and trust in God we can muster and will still be grievous to be born.

Blessedness can require much of us.

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