In those days Mary set out and went with haste to a Judean town in the hill country, where she entered the house of Zechariah and greeted Elizabeth. Luke 1:39-40
We know the story well. Young Mary, pregnant with Jesus, hastened over the Judean hills and valleys to be with Elizabeth, pregnant in her old age. Mary had a good excuse not to go on the journey: her own health and preparations for birth. But she risked the road. She took the time. She spent the energy. All of Mary’s life was guided by the Spirit of God. Mary knew Elizabeth needed her, and so she went.
Mary’s Assumption, a triumph over death, celebrates a woman who lived her life bringing goodness to others. Mary is a wonderful model of faith for us. In our world of hurry and worry, we can very legitimately have plenty to do just to care for ourselves and our families. But there are Elizabeth’s everywhere who need our visits. What a difference a phone call, a letter, a “stopping by” can make to a lonely, ill or aged person. What joy we can bring to children by paying full attention to them. What happiness we offer friends and colleagues when we affirm their successes and celebrations. We need only to look and we will easily find an Elizabeth today.
Mary, delight of God’s heart,
may the joy your visit brought to Elizabeth
be the joy that my presence brings
to those whom I take time to “visit” today.
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