Monday, December 10, 2012

Advent-Elizabeth, Jesus' Earthly Aunt

Shortly after Mary heard the new from the angel about her pregnancy, she went to her cousin Elizabeth's house.

photo courtesy of
Elizabeth, too was pregnant. Her baby was due sooner. Once Elizabeth saw Mary, the baby in her womb leaped. Elizabeth knew at once Mary had been chosen to be the mother of God's Son.

Though many years separated these women, Elizabeth identified with Mary. She, too carried a special son. The one who would prepare the way and would be named John.

For three short months, Mary stayed at Elizabeth's house. They probably talked like giddy first time mom's sharing every sensation. Mary wouldn't have experienced any baby movement during the time, but Elizabeth, being further along, would have. Elizabeth couldn't share any personal birthing tips, but could share what was to come in the next few months of pregnancy.

Once Mary left, Elizabeth finished her pregnancy and gave birth to her son and named him John. Family members thought she was crazy since no close relation also had that name. There were traditions. They went to her husband, Zachariah and asked him what the baby's name should be. He wrote "John" on a tablet. Once he wrote the word, his voice returned...but that is a story for the next post.

The time came when Caesar mandated a census. Elizabeth and Zachariah did not have to travel, as far as we know. Still, Elizabeth had bonded with Mary during the first three months, and knew Mary would have to travel eighty long miles to Bethlehem to register as part of Joseph's family.

photo courtesy of
She remembered her own delivery. It was difficult for an older woman to give birth. Her joints didn't move as easily and the aches intensified. She probably imagined the discomfort of Mary, riding on a donkey in her ninth month of pregnancy. She might have asked her husband, who also was a priest, to say a special prayer for Mary and for the safe delivery of her baby.

Perhaps Elizabeth dreamed a the day when the two cousins would get together, not knowing that one day, her son would baptize Mary's Son.

What thoughts do you have about Aunt Elizabeth?


Janice said...

I think Elizabeth may have shared some of her clothing with Mary if she had gotten too big with her pregnancy to use her other clothing. Elizabeth would probably have enjoyed having Mary around to help prepare meals since each of them were having to eat for two. I wonder what they had cravings for---certainly not pickles and ice cream! Maybe they made jokes about their cravings for unusual foods.

Lots to think about how it would have been back then!

Blessings, Janice

Mary Vee Writer said...

Shared clothing...I never thought of that.

And cravings for food. Hmmm you're right, I wonder what they craved, too.

Good thoughts, Janice