Dec 23, Tuesday

Tuesday, December 23 ✬ God looks with favor on God’s humble servants

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Prayers for candle-lighting

The Almighty has done great things for me,
and holy is his Name.
[Light four candles]
For nothing is impossible with God.
The Almighty has done great things for me,
and holy is his Name.

Luke 1:46-48a

And Mary said,
“My soul proclaims the greatness of the Lord,
my spirit rejoices in God my Savior;
for he has looked with favor on his lowly servant.”

Interpretation

Humility is not a virtue we often see displayed in public life. Humble politicians seldom
make headlines or boast that they have solutions to the large-scale issues we face in the
world today. Humble athletes usually don’t give exciting or controversial interviews
that make the rounds on television or the internet. Humble business leaders are
frequently criticized for failing to exercise aggressive leadership in challenging times.

But over and over the scriptures tell us that God values humility in those who serve the
Lord. Today is no exception. With all her inspired energy and exuberance, the youthful
but humble Mary acknowledges the goodness of the Lord acting in her life. Although
the Greek word is translated as “lowly” in the NRSV version of this passage from Luke,
the word signifies the quality of unpretentious behavior in a person, suggesting a total
lack of arrogance or pride. This unpretentiousness and humility are human qualities the
Lord consistently recognizes and honors.

For Reflection

Who are some people in your life who model humility for you and your congregation?
Identify some areas in your own life where you might pray to the Lord for greater
humility.

Identify some recent, specific times when you saw God “look with favor” on one of
God’s humble servants.

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