Tis the season to be…
Some would say jolly, some might say caring or kind or giving. I say it is the season of waiting, of expectation, of hope. That is what Advent is all about. It is the time before Christmas when we remember that a baby is coming. A very special baby. One that is both God and man, born to be the savior of the world.
I think of Mary a lot during Advent. I remember that she was so young, perhaps as young as 12, and most likely not any older than 14. I remember being that age and I am certain that if an angel had come to me and said I would have a baby, I might have reacted a whole lot different than she did.
This is how Mary’s encounter is told in the book of Luke 1:26-38 (ESV).
26 In the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent from God to a city of Galilee named Nazareth, 27 to a virgin betrothed to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David. And the virgin’s name was Mary. 28 And he came to her and said, “Greetings, O favored one, the Lord is with you!” 29 But she was greatly troubled at the saying, and tried to discern what sort of greeting this might be. 30 And the angel said to her, “Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favor with God. 31 And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus. 32 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, 33 and he will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and of his kingdom there will be no end.” 34 And Mary said to the angel, “How will this be, since I am a virgin?” 35 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. 36 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. 37 For nothing will be impossible with God.” 38 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.
It says Mary was greatly troubled, perhaps a more accurate description might be freaked out beyond belief! But the angel calmed her and told her the rest of the story. The news from the angel ends with Mary saying “I am a servant of the Lord; let it be to me according to your word.” I often wonder what I might have said to the Lord with such a proclamation. What do I say to God even in the small tasks he asks of me in my daily life? Do I bow in obedience and follow in faith? Do I answer as Mary did, or do I turn and hide my face in fear of what he has asked of me? I pray for that little girl’s strength so I may be someone who might find favor in His sight.
The baby Jesus had an incredible beginning, a very unlikely beginning for a king, however it is the amazing story that we celebrate every December 25. One we have celebrated for over 2000 years. I would say He made quite an impact. I pray that I will take the gift he gave us all and share it with those that do not know Him. It is the one present it is totally appropriate to re-gift!
Merry Christmas to you all!