And Mary said, “My soul magnifies the Lord, and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior” (Luke 1:46–47, ESV).
“My soul magnifies the Lord,” was the opening line in Mary’s worship song. It wasn’t a random thought. She was expressing what we all know to be true: there is more to us than just who we are physically. There is an immaterial, central part of us that will live forever—our soul. When Mary referred to her soul magnifying God, she was applying everything about herself, from the core of her being, to the magnificent task of exalting God for who He is.
We use the word magnify to explain making something appear larger. In Scripture, magnify is used to describe a change of view that allows us to see something we thought was one size, but turns out to be much larger. The ultimate use of the word “magnify” is in reference to God. Mary was saying she suddenly recognized God’s greatness in a new way.
Why is it important to magnify the Lord? When our problems seem large, God seems small. But when God is big, problems are small. Recognizing God’s limitlessness is the truth behind magnifying the Lord. It’s not that we make Him bigger. Instead, we begin to see Him for His proper size in relation to everything else. We stop and are awed by His infinite greatness and the smallness of everything else—including us.
Not only size, but perceived distance comes into play. Sometimes God seems far away. We don’t always have a sense of His nearness. However, when we magnify the Lord, we not only see His proper size and proportion, but we also realize His proximity to us and to what we’re dealing with. He suddenly seems much closer than we’d thought.
And most importantly, like a magnifying glass focusing the raw energy of the sun, when we magnify the Lord, His great power becomes much more evident to us and through us.
You may be heavyhearted or facing significant burdens. You may feel alone or overwhelmed by the pace of life. Take some time today to magnify the Lord. Deliberately step out of the rat race, and express your awareness of His greatness, His nearness, and His power—all made evident through His Son.
When we focus on the awesome nature of the God of the universe, everything else takes its proper place. And like Mary, as we magnify the Lord, our souls will rejoice in the glory of our Savior.
My soul magnifies You, Lord, for You have proven time and time again that Your presence puts everything else in a different light. I not only have all of Mary’s observations about Your power and Your faithfulness to Your people and to her—I also have my own account of Your faithfulness. Even through the admittedly imperfect lens of my life, may others watching catch a glimpse of Your greatness. In Jesus’ name, amen.