Saturday, December 12, 2009

My Soul Magnifies the Lord

Every year we buy a new Christmas album and start listening to it the day after Thanksgiving. This year I ordered Chris Tomlin's Glory in the Highest and while I was waiting for it to arrive, forgot that I ordered it and impulsively bought Making Merry when I was checking out at Starbucks. DUH! The two albums couldn't be more different and we've really enjoyed them both. Making Merry is a compilation of artists from all music genres, most of them from years past, singing original renditions of Christmas favorites. Glory in the Highest is all about worship. It was recorded live with some of Christian music's greatest artists coming alongside Chris who leads them in worship to classic Christmas hymns and a few new songs that most likely will make their way into the classics category over time. We've had the Chris Tomlin album playing on repeat in the car and it has been such a joy to listen to the kids learn the songs and start singing along.

Sweet Paige who is only 3, was sitting in her car seat singing at the top of her lungs with hands raised and eyes closed, "My soul, my soul, magnifies the Lord, my soul, magnifies the Loooooooorrrrrdddd. He has done great things for me." I was trying to drive and sneak peaks in the rearview mirror when she interrupted herself and asked, "Mommy, what does magnify mean?" On autopilot, I started to answer when I realized I've never actually thought about it before.

Magnify, according to, means to "increase in size, volume or significance." I grabbed my Bible and looked up Luke 1:46-55 where Mary, who is newly pregnant, prays a beautiful prayer to the Lord. She says in the first few verses, "My soul magnifies 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." As I pondered Mary's thoughts, I realized that her soul was "increasing in significance" the role of God in her situation. She didn't focus on the fact that she was not married and pregnant which left her open to social scorn, disgrace, and possible forced homelessness and prostitution. Instead she chose joy and praised God singing, "My soul magnifies the Lord for He has done great things for me. Holy is His name."

I now have a proper answer for Paige and a fresh perspective on evaluating my life. When times are difficult, do I still readily say, "My soul magnifies the Lord. He has done great things for me. Holy is His name?" Maybe not every time, but Lord, make that true in my life! Holy is Your name. You have done great things for me.

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