God is Doing a Great Work – Elizabeth and Mary

Mary got up and hurried to a city in the Judean highlands. She entered Zechariah’s home and greeted Elizabeth. When Elizabeth heard Mary’s greeting, the child leaped in her womb, and Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit. With a loud voice she blurted out, “God has blessed you above all women, and he has blessed the child you carry. Why do I have this honor, that the mother of my Lord should come to me? As soon as I heard your greeting, the baby in my womb jumped for joy.
Luke 1:39-45

Mary’s cousin, Elizabeth, is barren and beyond childbearing age. In fulfillment of the angel Gabriel’s pronouncement, Elizabeth is six months pregnant with John the Baptist. She must be ecstatic! Certainly her husband Zechariah communicated the role their son will play in preparing the way for the Messiah. God is doing a great work.

As soon as Mary learns of her pregnancy, she travels 8 days to visit her cousin. Elizabeth doesn’t yet know that Mary is pregnant so it would be natural for her to greet Mary with her own excitement. But Elizabeth is filled with the Holy Spirit, recognizes the mother of the Lord, and puts all the attention on Mary. Her joy is completely for Mary and Mary’s baby. What an intimate moment between two women and two boys! I imagine hugs, dancing, tears, laughter, and praise. Yes, lots of praise.

Elizabeth’s response is remarkable. She humbly passes the spotlight to Mary even though God is doing a great work in her as well. She validates the identity of Mary’s baby which certainly reassures Mary. Finally, Elizabeth encourages the “work” Mary is doing for God.

Excitement. Joy. Affirmation. Encouragement. May our response be the same when we see what God is doing in other people’s lives.

#SeedsofScripture #Advent #JohntheBaptist #preparetheway #Jesusiscoming #Christmas #secondcoming #repent #Godskingdom


  1. Julie Lavender on December 11, 2019 at 9:15 PM

    I love the picture you painted of the “intimate moment between two women and two boys.” What an exciting scene to visualize, especially this time of the year with the celebration of the birth of Jesus imminent. Thank you for sharing!

    • CathyChung on December 12, 2019 at 8:48 AM

      Thanks Julie. I remind myself all the time that these were real people with dreams and feelings just like us. Bringing life to the characters makes the story come alive.

  2. Candyce Carden on December 13, 2019 at 7:24 AM

    Thanks for showing me Elizabeth’s humility. This story often focuses on Mary, for obvious reasons, but Elizabeth plays an important role too.

    Humility is a trait worth cultivating.

    • Cathy Chung on December 21, 2019 at 6:46 PM

      Yes, I love Elizabeth’s excitement for Mary.

  3. Barbara Latta on December 14, 2019 at 2:22 PM

    I have often wondered if Mary and Elizabeth saw each other more times and if the boys played together as they were growing up. Did Elizabeth hear the news when the Messiah was born and also go see him? You gave us a great visual if these two women and their relationship.

    • CathyChung on December 14, 2019 at 5:30 PM

      I wonder the same thing too Barbara. However, according to Adam Hamilton, Mary traveled 8 days over mountains to reach Elizabeth and Zechariah’s home. So I doubt they visited often. The families would have pilgrimaged to Jerusalem for Passover every year, so certainly they had contact during the holidays – both mothers and boys.

  4. Idell Henning on September 1, 2020 at 7:19 PM

    Hmm It is now September 2020. Wondering how I can obtain this picture of Mary and Elizabeth. Any ideas? I would like to give it to our pastor. Our parish is St. Mary Visitation.

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