By: Chad Hyatt
Reflection—v.42, ‘Blessed are you…’
It happens in our little community that from time to time someone might call someone else ‘everything—but a child of God.’ It’s also true that every day we gather, both explicitly in our words and implicitly in our hospitality, we remind one another of the truth: we are beloved children of God. We use the power of our own voices, especially as marginalized persons—those who have been named and shamed by the powers-that-be—to tell our own story. We have the power to call one another ‘blessed’ instead of ‘cursed.’ Both Mary and Elizabeth engage in just this kind of empowering and subversive work. Elizabeth had been regarded with suspicion and labeled as barren because she had no child, a stigma of humiliation. This same woman announces with a ‘loud voice’ that Mary, her poor relative, is ‘blessed.’ Luke attributes that loud proclamation to the work of the Holy Spirit within Elizabeth. She is functioning as a prophet. Hers is not a quiet or tentative voice. Hers is the voice of a woman who knows who she is and is unashamed. Elizabeth speaks for all of us who have been name-called or shamed, who have been pinned with a label or who have experienced the humiliation of being profiled. She speaks for all of us who hear those same harassing voices deep inside our own selves, for all of us who have questioned whether we were enough. Elizabeth speaks loudly and boldly, and she reminds Mary—and us—that we are blessed.
Prayer: Holy Spirit, fill us like Elizabeth so that we may boldly bless one another.