Mary and Elizabeth, pregnant with their sons as foretold by the angel Gabriel, are filled with the Holy Spirit as they encounter one another. The presence of the Spirit gives us an insight into what happens when we cooperate with God’s grace in our lives: the Lord does great things!
Luke’s Gospel sets the context for the birth of John the Baptist – the last and greatest prophet who will proclaim Jesus as the Lamb of God – and shows us how God constantly works through our lives to bring about something new.
The Lord speaks of a sober reality in the Gospel today: both he and John the Baptist will suffer. It’s a powerful reminder that Christ came for us…our sins, our weaknesses, our wounds…and he offers his life that we might be reunited with God.
The Lord reveals how the people complained about him and John the Baptist. Their “glass is half empty” thinking demonstrates the tremendous influence we have in shaping and determining our attitude…especially in difficult moments in our lives.
The Lord speaks to the people about John the Baptist as the fulfillment of the Law and the Prophets. He is Elijah, who points out the Lamb of God, and from this foundation of faith we take our part in God’s great story of salvation history.
In every age people find themselves looking for hope as they face the challenges and battles of life. Jesus Christ is the foundation of our hope, inspiring us to seek out the Lord in our lives and discerning how we can share our hope with one another.
John’s death vividly reveals the potential price tag for our faith. Yet we can find new strength to face the injustices of life through our conviction that we are made for more…in this life and in the life to come.