The last part of Mary's psalm speaks to us of God's faithfulness:
“He has helped his servant Israel, in remembrance of his mercy, as he spoke to our fathers, to Abraham and to his offspring forever.”Mary was realizing that God was going to keep all of His promises, that He had made to His people for oh, so many years!
In spite of the many, many times that Israel had wandered and sinned, and sinned and wandered, God was still the God of the covenant. The promise. In what we would say, in human terms, was reckless disregard for the fact that the Jewish people had broken God's law and wandered from His will, God was determined to continue His plan.
He was determined (and still is, today) to continue His mercy and His grace. The Messiah is coming. It's His love in action that shows He is faithful -- and that is worth singing about!
I'm indebted to Paul Decker for the following illustration:
Like any good mother, when Karen found out that another baby was on the way, she did what she could to help her 3-year-oId son, Michael, prepare for a new sibling. They found out that the new baby was going to be a girl, and day after day, night after night, Michael sang to his sister in Mommy’s tummy. He was building a bond of love with his little sister before he even met her.In time, the labor pains came. Soon it was every five minutes. Every three...every minute. But serious complications arose during delivery and Karen found herself in hours of labor. Finally, after a long struggle, Michael’s little sister was born. But she was in very serious condition. With a siren howling in the night, the ambulance rushed the infant to the neonatal intensive care unit in Knoxville, Tennessee.The days inched by. The little girl got worse. The pediatrician had to tell the parents, "There is very little hope. Be prepared for the worst." Karen and her husband contacted a local cemetery about a burial plot. They had fixed up a special room in their house for their new baby but now they found themselves having to plan for a funeral.Michael, however, kept begging his parents to let him see his sister. "I want to sing to her," he kept saying. Week two in intensive care looked as if a funeral would come before the week was over. Michael kept nagging about singing to his sister, but kids are never allowed in intensive care.Karen made up her mind, though. She would take Michael whether they liked it or not! If he didn’t see his sister right then, he may never see her alive. She dressed him in an oversized scrub suit and marched him into ICU. He looked like a walking laundry basket.But the head nurse recognized him as a child andbellowed, "Get that kid out of here now! No children are allowed.” The mother rose up strong in Karen, and the usually mild-mannered lady glared steel-eyed right into the head nurse’s face, her lips a firm line. "He is not leaving until he sings to his sister!"Karen towed Michael to his sister’s bedside. He gazed at the tiny infant losing the battle to live. After a moment, he began to sing. In the pure-hearted voice of a 3-year-old, Michael sang: "You are my sunshine, my only sunshine, you make me happy when skies are gray…”Instantly the baby girl seemed to respond. The pulse rate began to calm down and become steady. "Keep on singing, Michael," encouraged Karen with tears in her eyes."You never know, dear, how much I love you, Please don’t take my sunshine away…" As Michael sang to his sister, the baby’s ragged, strained breathing became as smooth as a kitten’s purr. Tears had now conquered the face of the bossy head nurse. Karen glowed. "You are my sunshine, my only sunshine. Please don’t, take my sunshine away..."The next day...the very next day...the little girl was well enough to go home! Woman’s Day Magazine called it "The Miracle of a Brother’s Song." The medical staff just called it a miracle. Karen called it a miracle of God’s love!God is still showing His mercy and grace today. The miracle of His love is still continuing, even in our own times. Jesus came as God's love song to us -- He said, "You matter to me." He is singing to this world today, if we will only listen.
And when we listen, we will discover the true spirit of Christmas. Mary listened, and she showed us that we should respond with worship. We should give Him our hearts -- that is the best we can offer, and it delights our Lord.
We have plenty to sing about. Is our praise overdue? Has it been a while since we praised Him? Oh, come, let us adore Him -- Christ the Lord!