When the angel appears to Mary to reveal that she has been chosen to bear Jesus, the long-awaited Messiah, Mary must have felt shocked, afraid, dismayed, and confused. Yet her response is a beautiful statement of faith in the form of a song, known as the Magnificat. This song glorifying God's presence and promise reveals many of the themes that will later be the foundation of Jesus' ministry—justice, grace, and deliverance. By focusing prayerful attention on the song of Mary and her witness throughout the gospel, readers can draw close to the kingdom of heaven that Mary's song celebrated and Jesus' ministry revealed. For each week of Advent, a different line from the Magnificat serves as the basis for daily meditations that will appeal to individuals or groups. Each meditation relates the biblical context of the Magnificat's message along with illustrations of how these principles apply to today. Includes a guide for small groups.
Writing on the lectionary texts from Job, Stroman deals with extremely contemporary issues. We discover in these messages that Job's struggles are the same as ours. The texts from Ruth and 1 Samuel introduce us to four important Old Testament women (Naomi, Orpah, Ruth, and Hannah) who all play an important role in the biblical narrative, providing insight into vital current issues.