GOSPEL READING LUKE 1:39-45
Mary set out in haste…and greeted Elizabeth. When Elizabeth heard Mary’s greeting, the baby stirred in her womb. Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit, and cried out: “Blessed are you among women and blessed is the fruit of your womb….”
The interchange between Mary and Elizabeth recorded in today’s Gospel was quite remarkable. They were both mothers, each with a marvelous story. Ordinarily, they would have been bursting with their own good news. Yet, Mary calmly greeted her older cousin, letting her speak first. Instead of seeking praise for her child and herself, Elizabeth praised Mary with words we know by heart “Blessed are you among women and blessed is the fruit of your womb.” There is a blessing in this for us, if we will accept it. In these days before Christmas, let us try hard to defer to others.
MESSAGE FROM MARY AND ELIZABETH
“Blessed are you and worthy of God’s praise if you learn to focus on others. It’s not that you shouldn’t talk yourself; you have to share yourself with family and friends. But think of their needs first; let them invite you into their stories. Really listen to them; be with them. Don’t be too busy to bother. Blessings are yours when you love with gentle patience, a good heart, and listen with attentive ears.”
Jesus, help us become better listeners. We still have a lot of things unfinished as we prepare for Christmas, and time is pushing us. Yet, help us to be thoughtful of others. Help us to listen and to love. Amen.