In Luke's first chapter (39-45), we meet Elizabeth, Mary's cousin, wife of Zechariah, and the mother of John the Baptist. Just like her son, Elizabeth was a woman of great faith who was blessed with the wisdom to understand God's greater plan.
When Elizabeth first sees her young, pregnant cousin, the infant in her womb leaps for joy. And while unborn son's movement is a incredible moment that recognizes Jesus' presence in our world, Elizabeth's understand of what all this means is its own special moment for her. Elizabeth wisely interprets her son's movements and counsels and supports her cousin, calling her blessed and reassuring her that she is truly a part of God's plan.
Not only is Elizabeth John's mother, she is a wise, spiritual mother to Mary. Elizabeth's wisdom is not her own, but a wisdom that comes from her deep, abiding faith in God. The opposite of her doubtful husband, Elizabeth wisely sees God's motion in her life. She does not resent her later-in-life pregnancy, but rejoices in it. She does not doubt God's action in her life or her cousin's. And she shares this wisdom, as all great spiritual mothers do, with those around her who are troubled or scared.
There will be times that we are called to bear witness, to share our wisdom with others. God will use our faith and life to minister to others, blessing us with the wisdom to guide us. But to do this, we have to listen with an open heart as Elizabeth did.
Today, as we reflect on Elizabeth's grace and wisdom in trying times, we can intercede through St. Elizabeth for her prayers and wisdom in our lives. Do we listen as St. Elizabeth listened? Do we wisely share as St. Elizabeth shared? Are we a good spiritual mother to those around us seeking greater understanding?