Mary. The account of the angel appearing to her in the story of Christmas continues to amaze me each time I read it.
“Don’t be afraid, Mary,” the angel told her, “for you have found favor with God! You will conceive and give birth to a son, and you will name him Jesus. He will be very great and will be called the Son of the Most High. The Lord God will give him the throne of his ancestor David. And he will reign over Israel forever; his Kingdom will never end!” Luke 1:30-33
You may read the full account of Luke 1:26-38 here.
I wish I could know more about Mary. Really, how old was she? What were her hobbies, interests? Was she educated, or skilled in certain ways? What was her daily life like and who was her family? How did she and Joseph meet? I ponder such questions.
The biggest two I have, though, are how could such a young girl be responsible enough to carry God’s son within her? And why did God choose Mary to do so? If she in fact was 14 or 15 years old, I can’t help but compare the irresponsible, self-centered me when I was that age. Yikes!
Yet, she was mature enough to accept God’s will for her life. She didn’t argue. She didn’t think of herself. Mary just said yes.
Mary said yes to God.
Engaged to Joseph, young Mary was a virgin. I can’t blame her for asking how in the world could this happen. Physically it was impossible, but it wasn’t impossible for God. Gabriel explained how the Holy Spirit would come upon her and the baby would be the very Son of God.
Whether or not she understood exactly what the angel meant, she didn’t ask questions or inquire of more details. That’s my tendency. I’d want to know everything up front. But not Mary. She simply said yes.
“I am the Lord’s servant. May everything you have said about me come true.” Luke 1:38
The Living Bible says it this way:
“I am the Lord’s servant, and I am willing to do whatever he wants. May everything you said come true.”
Mary’s example is simply beautiful.
It’s an example for each of us. It’s an example for me. Am I willing to do whatever God wants? I think I am. I say I am. But, really, am I?
Is there something God is asking you to do? Is He asking you to follow Him in a certain direction? Could He be stirring within you something new or different? Maybe something out of your comfort zone? What is He asking you to do?
It may not be to carry God’s Son in your womb, but it may feel just as overwhelming. It may feel huge in this moment, and impossible, and scary. And a whole lot of other emotions.
I can only imagine Mary might have felt some of the same.
Will we follow Mary’s example?
The thing is, God knows what He’s doing. Nothing is impossible for Him. If He’s calling us to do a particular thing, He will equip us to do it. We can trust Him in this. If He chooses to use us, may we be willing to do whatever He wants. Especially during this Christmas season. When God calls us, may we follow Mary’s example and respond the way she did.
I pray we each will say yes.
Merry Christmas, my friend!
This post was adapted from its original version from the Rediscovering Christmas series.
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