Mary

Mary, a young girl touched by God’s love. Given the gift of his son. Chosen to love him, nurture him, comfort him and teach him. Chosen to be the mother of Jesus. Chosen to experience joy and sorrow, grace and heartbreak.

There is a lot to come in Mary’s life.  She we experience frustration as her two year old tests her patience.  She will frantically search for him when he disappears at 12 and is found at the temple.  She’ll sigh as his eyes roll at her through his teenage years.  When he becomes a man she will wonder when it will happen, when he’ll let the world know, and she’ll worry.  There’s a lot to come in Mary’s life.

Yet now we sit in Advent and see her as a young girl.  A young girl who doesn’t yet know what it means to mother, what it means to mother Jesus.  A girls whose dreams might have been of family and home, but not in this way.  Her hopes and dreams had not yet been fully crushed by the reality of her poor existence.  She does not yet realize the pressure that comes as the woman of the house, working from dawn until dusk to keep her family fed, clothed and nurtured.

She has no idea what lies ahead and I wonder if this is what it means to “Let the children alone,…{for} God’s kingdom is made up of people like these.” {Matthew 19: 14} .  Jesus says we must be like little children.  Is this why Mary was chosen?

What if she were ten years older?  Would her reaction have been the same or would there be a healthy dose of skepticism.  Would she even see the Angel or hear his message?  Would she have been open to the opportunities ahead?

When Mary is asked she has not yet encountered difficulties or despair.  She is hidden in her family, protected by her parents and she knows little heartbreak or pain.  Given the choice, she moves boldly into an unexpected future, grateful for opportunities and trusting in God’s promise. She seems a bit naive.  She seems so sure.  She seems very much like a child.

We too have a promise. We are promised forgiveness and grace.  We are given the opportunity to choose.  We are blessed with the knowledge that God never gives up on us.

Yet even with these promises, even knowing that God never quits we so often do.  This season we should look to Mary for guidance.  When God leads us, we should go, trusting and sure.   New roads can be new beginnings.  Opportunities are found where we least expect them.  Risk is an absolute must.

Are we willing to follow? Are we willing to be like the little children, so trusting and sure?  Can we trust God enough to let go?  It’s time for us to find out.

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3 responses to “Mary

  1. It is possible that first, second and third century Christians never imagined a virgin birth, that it is an invention by hierarchy of fourth century church. For 2 reasons: to legitimize Jesus re Old Testament prophesy and to impress pagans who were being proselytized. Jesus needs no legitimization and Mary is to be no less venerated either if there is no virgin birth. The issue is so contentious that participants miss the point. I need no miracles to embrace the teachings of Jesus and to accept His invitation.

    • Thanks for the comment Carl! Always lots to think about with Jesus and the various sources, gospels and theories. The one thing I always enjoyed in seminary was a good debate over coffee in the common room. It’s too bad more Churches don’t have that!

  2. l might buy the Virgin birth is a late add on with the Gospels of Luke and Matthew since they were written later then Mark. The third century is a bit of a stretch. It needs to be asked however, when do we just accept by faith?
    Jesus is! Whether born or adopted as God’s Son, Jesus is! Let’s not dissect things so much that we no longer have anything of substance to hold on to.

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