December 19

He has put down the mighty from their thrones, and exalted the lowly. He has filled the hungry with good things, and the rich He has sent away empty. Luke 1:52-53

Mary prophesied in this prayer concerning the whole character of her Son and of the Kingdom of God. Christ was born with a cross in His heart – that is, He naturally followed the way of humility and selfless sacrifice. It was natural to Him. Right through His earthly life and ministry, Jesus never grasped at anything as being His right. He displayed the life of someone who sought no fame or wealth or personal comfort. Yet to Him all thrones will be given; all wealth and riches will be laid at His feet. This is spiritual law – it is the law of God’s nature and God’s kingdom. The hallmark of Jesus’ teaching is that it always exalted God and His ways. He asked Peter for the favour of entering and using his boat, when He could command myriads of angels. When invited to a banquet, He would take the lowest seat. When hosting a banquet, He would invite the beggars and the unwanted people. When visiting a city, He would go to tea with the least respected citizen (Zacchaeus). When receiving friends, He would make sure He washed their feet. Jesus would always do these things, because not only did He die on the cross, He also lived a crucified life. He delighted in taking the lowest path, and He found perfect joy and ease there. There were no crowds to impress and no reputation to lose there, anyway. There was also no morbid sense of self-conscious sacrifice in Him. Can you hear Him laugh as He takes the lowest path and delights in the kind of people He finds there? Go with Him – it is the way of joy.