The Magnifier and the Magnified
“And Mary said: ‘My soul glorifies the Lord and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior, for he has been mindful of the humble state of his servant. From now on all generations will call me blessed, for the Mighty One has done great things for me—holy is his name. His mercy extends to those who fear him, from generation to generation. He has performed mighty deeds with his arm; he has scattered those who are proud in their inmost thoughts. He has brought down rulers from their thrones but has lifted up the humble. He has filled the hungry with good things but has sent the rich away empty. He has helped his servant Israel, remembering to be merciful to Abraham and his descendants forever, just as he promised our ancestors.’” Luke 1:46-55
There is no doubt that Mary was well acquainted with the Old Testament Scriptures and the covenant of loyalty and love God had made with her people. Upon reading her song of worship, you might even notice the similarities of hers to Hannah’s in 1 Samuel 2. Her knowledge and her belief preceded her song. To magnify something is to increase its size. As all the properties of that something increases, the magnifier begins to fade away. The magnifier’s perspective changes. Receiving a promise to have your pain and sin alleviated will change your perspective. We must magnify Him to the highest power so to see our throbbing pain of self-sufficiency replaced with the glow of joyful humility.
A cultural shift has transposed our world not only rebalancing our scales of autonomy and collectivity but rewriting them altogether. Timothy Keller puts it best when he says, “To serve someone else’s promotion and success does not compromise your dignity and greatness. Rather, it establishes it.” This is exactly what Mary exemplified throughout her song. Her song of magnification is not shared with us for us to adore her, but rather to magnify her Son along with her. Mary reveals her deepest affections when she meditates on what God has already done for her. Like her, the things we do in private will show us exactly what our deepest affections are and are not.
Athletes, let’s not kid ourselves by thinking we are stand-alone unstoppable. And coaches, the same applies when thinking your story of victory is shared because of your sole contribution. Jesus’ arrival, life, and death violated every boundary known to man. For the sake of His Name, Mary’s boundaries were overstepped as well. Nonetheless, there are many people whose knowledge of the truth depends on us. This extends across boundaries of age and culture. “From generation to generation,” Mary says, how the older treats the younger and the younger the older will vitalize or quench, magnify or shrink the sharing of this truth. To the coach and the athlete, the parent, and child, remember that the way generations treat one another bears great weight in the passing of biblical truth from one generation to the next.
- What does my soul magnify?
- What does my spirit rejoice in?
- How do I try to be my own savior?
1 Peter 2:17; 1 Timothy 5:8
"Lord, You say in Your Word that you give us the desires of our hearts (Psalm 37:4). Move my desires to be Your desires! You are the only thing in my life that deserves to be magnified. Give me opportunities to share this life-changing truth with people that are both older and younger than me and most of all, help me to take these opportunities. Thank You for the reminder of Your willingness to humble Yourself. In the Name of Jesus I pray, Amen.”