Is blessing simply material? We sit down to a scrumptious meal in a warm home with wonderful people and declare, “We are so blessed.” But what if the meal isn’t great, the home is cold, and the people are…just okay? Are we still blessed? When we look at the life of Mary, she was a poor, pregnant, young…and blessed. Blessing is not always seen and is not only in the breakthrough. The blessing can be in the waiting. But what do we do while we are waiting? Are we still blessed when we don’t yet see the breakthrough? In Luke 1:26–38, Mary sees that God’s blessing abounds as we believe the promise, magnify the promise-maker, and see by faith what is not yet.
First, blessing abounds as we believe the promise (Luke 1:39–45). As soon as Elizabeth sees Mary, the baby in her womb leaps, and she is filled with the Holy Spirit. So much favor rests on Mary that she spills that favor on everyone that she meets simply by her greeting! Why? The angel goes on to say that she is blessed because “she…believed that there would be a fulfillment of what was spoken to her from the Lord” (1:45). Similarly, all of God’s promises are yes and Amen for us in Christ. As we believe we transfer what is in our account (all the promises of God) into our possession so that we operate by its power. Mary is not blessed because she is Mary; Mary is blessed because she receives and believes God’s promise. Indeed, when a woman later blesses Mary’s womb for bearing Jesus, Jesus replies, “Blessed rather are those who hear the word of God and keep it” (Luke 11:27–28). Blessing abounds as we believe the promises of God’s Word.
Also blessing abounds as we magnify the promise-maker (Luke 1:46–50). Mary magnifies the Lord and rejoices in God (her) Savior (1:46–47). Often our souls focus like microscopes, worrying and fretting about small things, making little things big. Yet our souls ought to be more like telescopes, magnifying and focusing on what is truly Big. Our God is the promise-maker who sees the humble estate of his servant and gives mercy from generation to generation. To abound in blessing, we must train our souls to be more like telescopes than microscopes, focusing our hearts on what is truly worthy of our attention.
Finally, blessing abounds as we see by faith what is not yet (Luke 1:51–56). Mary declares that the Lord has shown strength with his arm…scattered the proud…brought down the mighty from their thrones and exalted those of humble estate (1:51–52). Really? When Mary said that, Rome still had power, Herod still controlled the priesthood, and Mary was still a poor, pregnant girl. Yet Mary is strengthened as she looks to God’s past, present, and future faithfulness.
So what? As we step into this season of Advent, we are waiting and longing for the coming of our Savior. He came the first time at the first Christmas. He comes in power through His Spirit to break through into our circumstances. And He will come again in glory to wipe every tear away. Even as we wait with eager longing for His coming, we do not wait passively. Instead we believe the promise, magnify the promise-maker, and see by faith what is not yet.