Magnifying God, Not Circumstances

During the Season of Advent, I am reading the John Piper Devotional, “Good News of Great Joy.”  Today’s reading from Luke 1:46-55 stresses the cheerful humility of Mary and Elizabeth, “My soul magnifies the Lord, and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior, for he has looked on the humble estate of his servant.”  Luke 1:46-48

Mary’s words are a song of praise which magnifies the Lord.  Two things happen when we magnify the Lord:  first, we look one way through the magnifying lens, as it were, and God is closer and his acts are enlarged; we see what He has done in greater clarity.  Secondly, we look through the lens in the opposite way and our circumstances appear smaller, further away, diminished.

In light of Mary’s circumstances, she could have directed her lens backwards.  Most of us do.  Our circumstances appear huge, and the more we talk and think about them, the larger they loom.  Everything is hopeless, we are helpless, and God isn’t even in the picture until we have exhausted ourselves.

Today, we should view God and our circumstances in the right perspective.  Begin, as Mary did by stating it…or even singing it that your soul will magnify the Lord and that your spirit will rejoice in God.  Your circumstances may have you in a lowly way, but your Lord, your God, your Savior is not absent.  He is looking on your estate and will find you cheerfully and humbly magnifying Him.

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