“At that time Mary got ready and hurried to a town in the hill country of Judea, where she entered Zechariah’s home and greeted Elizabeth. When Elizabeth heard Mary’s greeting, the baby leaped in her womb, and Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit. In a loud voice she exclaimed: ‘Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the child you will bear! But why am I so favored, that the mother of my Lord should come to me? As soon as the sound of your greeting reached my ears, the baby in my womb leaped for joy. Blessed is she who has believed that the Lord would fulfill his promises to her!’”
Luke 1:39-44 (NIV)
Babies “dance” in the womb! According to a recent report foetuses as young as 16 weeks respond to the sound of music. They open their mouths and stick out their tongues as if singing or humming along to the tune. Of course, it’s easy to over-analyze but the survey clearly implies that babies in the womb react to music in the same way as children and adults do.
In the verses above the Bible records the reaction of a baby in its mother’s womb. Elizabeth was the cousin of Mary, the mother of Jesus Christ. She was overcome when the pregnant Mary visited her, and the baby in Elizabeth’s womb jumped with joy. Elizabeth knew that her own promised child of her old age (John the Baptist) would be special, and that Mary’s child was the Lord for whom the whole world was waiting. For Elizabeth, it was something to sing and dance about, and her child-to-be joined in.
I wonder what we Christians should do as we think about Christ’s presence and about his coming again? What should we do as we wait for his return?
Perhaps the stories of Elizabeth and the news of the unborn “dancing” in the womb to music can give us a clue. What we can do is respond to Christ’s music. Let his words be like a symphony that engages every part of our mind, body, soul and spirit.
Let’s dance to the beat and the rhythm of grace.
Father, thank you that we have something to sing and dance about: the good news of your son, Jesus Christ. In his name.
Study by James Henderson
About the Author:
James Henderson is the National Ministry Leader for Grace Communion International in the UK and Ireland. You are welcome to attend any of our local congregations in the UK and Ireland. For details of your nearest local congregation, check on our website, www.gracecom.org.uk under the ‘Churches’ tab, or ring +44 (0)1858 437099.