Friday, December 3, 2010

[thoughts during advent] mary...

    In the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent from God to a city of Galilee named Nazareth, to a virgin betrothed to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David. And the virgin's name was Mary. And he came to her and said, “Greetings, O favored one, the Lord is with you!” But she was greatly troubled at the saying, and tried to discern what sort of greeting this might be. And the angel said to her, “Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favor with God. And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus. He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. And the Lord God will give to him the throne of his father David, and he will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and of his kingdom there will be no end.”
    And Mary said to the angel, “How will this be, since I am a virgin?”
    And the angel answered her, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you; therefore the child to be born will be called holy—the Son of God. And behold, your relative Elizabeth in her old age has also conceived a son, and this is the sixth month with her who was called barren. For nothing will be impossible with God.” And Mary said, “Behold, I am the servant of the Lord; let it be to me according to your word.” And the angel departed from her.
(Luke 1:26-38 ESV)
have you ever thought about mary's reaction to this news? "behold, i am the servant of the Lord; let it be to me according to your word."

she was just told that she was going to have a baby, as a virgin, betrothed to a man who is going to think this is crazy and likely leave her. her life dreams were all changed by this proclamation. people would think differently of her. she would lose many friends and be talked about.  this is exciting, but make no mistake, it was going to be quite costly!

and mary just says, let it be to me. how was she able to respond this way? i know i would have responded more like zechariah did when the angel told him that elizabeth would conceive or like sarah did when god told abraham that sarah would have a son. a response out of what i can know or experience. a response of one that forgets that my god works in the supernatural. a response of one that has forgotten the promises of god.

mary is not some wonder woman with secret powers that you and i do not have. she is human just like you and me. it is god who gives her the faith to trust him. one of my prayers this week has been that he would transform and renew me each day and give me faith like mary. that when he calls me to something, rather than laughing at its impossibility or being fearful of all that it will require of me, i too can say, "behold, i am the servant of the Lord; let it be to me according to your word."

oh emmanuel - god with us! your nearness is our good. help our unbelief! give us faith to trust your promises and know that they are good.

1 comment:

Ginger said...

Love this post - working through Mary's story leaves me staggering by the response of this teen who trusted HIS will above all else. Her willingness to sacrifice wedding plans, reputation, standing, friendships, even naming her child... what an example in submission!