And Mary abode with her about three months, and returned to her own house. Now Elisabeth’s full time came that she should be delivered; and she brought forth a son. And her neighbours and her cousins heard how the Lord had shewed great mercy upon her; and they rejoiced with her. – Luke 1:56-58
After her song of rejoicing, Mary spends the final three months of Elisabeth’s pregnancy with her cousin. We are not sure whether she stayed until the delivery or left when people started to arrive to celebrate the birth.
This was a great time of rejoicing for the family of Zacharias and Elisabeth. They had prayed for so long for a child, and now they have been blessed with a son! Gabriel told them that there would be great rejoicing at the birth of their son (Luke 1:14), and so it is.
There are two key points that I would like to make about this celebration.
1. People rejoiced at the birth of this child.
This should not just occur when a special child is born. When any couple is blessed by God to have a child, it should be a time of great joy and celebration. Today, children are often viewed as a burden. They should not be seen this way because they are a heritage and blessing from God!
2. When fellow brethren in our church are rejoicing, we should rejoice along with them.
If we have the mind that we are instructed to have, then we see ourselves as part of the single body of Christ in our local congregation. This means that when something good happens to my brother in Christ, it is like it is happening to me as well. Therefore, the blessing God has for him is not an occasion of jealousy for me. I should be happy, not just for him, but with him.
The same holds true for times of sorrow. When a fellow member of my church hurts, I should hurt as well. When a brother suffers loss, I suffer loss. All of this is because we are one body in Christ. We experience the grace of life and the hardships of this world together.
Rejoice with them that do rejoice, and weep with them that weep. – Romans 12:15