Then Mary said, “Here am I, the servant of the Lord; let it be with me according to your word.” Then the angel departed from her. Luke 1 v 38
So far at Advent, we have been considering the aspect of listening and responding to God, and so it is natural to consider Mary’s response to the message of the angel. What could have been Mary’s response to the Angel?
Perhaps Mary could have resisted the message of the Angel and therefore the will of God. She was accepting a life changing role with its many consequences for her. Her way ahead was unknown. Joseph, her family, and her community could reject her. How could she possibly explain what was to happen to her?
Perhaps Mary could have accepted the will of God but with resignation. Mary may not have been completely happy with the situation but what else could she do? She had been chosen, she had found favour, and as a young woman of very low social status in the cultural climate at the time, what choices does she have?
Mary might simply commit her future to God and trust that God could redeem any situation that she found herself in. That even as a pregnant teenager facing the gossip of the community, that God would work things out in good time.
Or Mary, as these words might indicate, might rejoice at the commission that she has been given – not just being willing to accept this role but trusting herself, her future, the unknown completely to her God, whatever the outcome may be. She is the servant of God, willingly submitting herself to the future that God was giving to her, not knowing any of the consequences, unable to see that in the future ‘that a sword would pierce her own heart’ but trusting her God completely.
This is trust and faith indeed.
A prayer: Father, sometimes life is hard, and I kick against the demands and the course of my life. I would like things to be easy, comfortable, convenient, and straightforward, knowing the
direction and clear purpose of the path in front of me. But life is uncertain, unpredictable, difficult and I cannot see the road in front of me. But you have promised a light for my path and not a crystal ball into the future.
Help me to trust you one step at a time, not with resignation but with gladness and trust that you know the end from the beginning and your purpose for me is true and good.
The journey may be uncomfortable, and others may misunderstand your purpose – but your purpose is good.