“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.”
(Luke 1:42b-44, ESV)
After the angel Gabriel had appeared later to Mary to tell her that she was to give birth she went off to visit her cousin Elizabeth who was also pregnant. The baby in Elizabeth’s womb rejoiced at Mary’s presence because of the baby in her womb, Jesus, the Savior. Elizabeth announced that Mary was highly favored, blessed for she, though not perfect, had been chosen by God to be the mother of His Divine Son.
Like Mary, Elizabeth’s husband had received a visitation from the angel Gabriel who announced that his wife was going to give birth to the Lord’s messenger. Yet, unlike her kinsman, Zachariah, Mary was a simple country girl, unschooled in the scriptures. Still she knew the Lord and had faith in Him. She knew He was capable of mighty deeds, yet the message the angel Gabriel gave her made no sense since the supernatural conception of a child by the Holy Spirit was something never heard of before. And yet Mary was willing to do what the Lord commanded even if she did not fully comprehend how it was to happen.
Mary knew, as she expressed in her son of praise, the Magnificat, that the Lord exalted the lowly. She praised Him because He called the least likely people to accomplish His work, not the rich, famous and mighty. His ways and His will confound humans because He does things contrary to what the world thinks best. He always favors and blesses the lowly, the humble, the insignificant, and uses them to accomplish His greatest works. People like Mary and people like us.