“Mary did you know that your baby boy would someday walk on water? Mary did you know that your baby boy would save your sons and daughters?”
Have you heard this song? If not, no worries. Some people don’t like it because of course Mary knew! Maybe not specific details, but she knew. You cannot sing the Magnificat without knowing:
“With all my heart I glorify the Lord!
In the depths of who I am I rejoice in God my savior.
He has looked with favor on the low status of his servant.
Look! From now on, everyone will consider me highly favored
because the mighty one has done great things for me. Holy is his name.
He shows mercy to everyone,
from one generation to the next,
who honors him as God. He has shown strength with his arm.
He has scattered those with arrogant thoughts and proud inclinations.
He has pulled the powerful down from their thrones
and lifted up the lowly. He has filled the hungry with good things
and sent the rich away empty-handed.
He has come to the aid of his servant Israel,
remembering his mercy,
just as he promised to our ancestors,
to Abraham and to Abraham’s descendants forever.”
But as unpopular as the song is, maybe in this season of advent it isn’t such a bad idea to sit and ponder and wonder…Mary, did you know? Nora, do I know?
Because maybe, even if you believe in the story of God coming to earth as a baby, it is hard to believe that God cares about saving you let alone the whole, capitalistic, bigoted, painful world. Maybe you feel more empty than pregnant with God’s promise to pull down the powerful and lift the lowly.
But what if you take a moment to ponder, to sit with Mary, to look around for signs of coming change. Who is proclaiming the Good News, that love is being born, that justice is coming?
Maybe it isn’t the voices you expected it to be.
Mary, after all, was not the voice people were used to looking towards.
Maybe it isn’t in the rituals you used to find comfort in.
Did Mary light candles and sing hymns?
Maybe it isn’t the message you are used to hearing.
Mary’s song doesn’t sound particularly encouraging to the rich, powerful, and privileged.
But do you hear it? Quiet at first, but rising as more voices chime in.
Black Lives Matter! No Justice, No Peace! Know Justice, Know Peace! Housing First! Healthcare is a right! All Means All!
And not just signs people put into their windows, but people who hear Mary’s song and are transformed. They join in the work to “fill those who are hungry with good things and send the rich away empty handed.” They help each other.
Groups. Individuals. Neighbors.
All we need to do it look around at the other boats around us shining their lights and know.
(The article was read by Kellie at our last Zoom meeting. Enjoy it again!)