In the sixth month of Elizabeth’s pregnancy, God sent the angel Gabriel to Nazareth, a village in Galilee, to a virgin named Mary. She was engaged to be married to a man named Joseph, a descendant of King David. Gabriel appeared to her and said, “Greetings, favored woman! The Lord is with you!”
Confused and disturbed, Mary tried to think what the angel could mean. “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!”
Mary asked the angel, “But how can this happen? I am a virgin.”
The angel replied, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you. So the baby to be born will be holy, and he will be called the Son of God. What’s more, your relative Elizabeth has become pregnant in her old age! People used to say she was barren, but she has conceived a son and is now in her sixth month. For the word of God will never fail.”
Mary responded, “I am the Lord’s servant. May everything you have said about me come true.” And then the angel left her.
Mary was a young teenage girl living with her parents and engaged to marry Joseph. One can imagine she spent her spare time preparing for her marriage and home. An unfamiliar voice interrupted her thoughts. “Greetings, favored woman! The Lord is with you!” The majestic angel stood before her. “Don’t be afraid, Mary, for you have found favor with God! You will conceive and give birth to a son, and you will name him Jesus.”
I can imagine her stammering in shock. “Um. Ah. I am a virgin. How on earth?” “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the baby will be the Son of God.”
Mary experienced a wave of confident trust sweep over her. “I am the Lord’s servant. May it be.”
The angel left her.
What just happened? A baby? Me? How? When? What does this mean?
That was a load to drop on a young girl. God believed she was up to the challenge because he chose Mary.
Mary accepted the news with calm acceptance. Whatever God had planned, she was on board with it. No wonder God selected her.
What load has God dropped on you? Are you confused or doubtful? Or are you ready to accept it without question?
Mary didn’t know God’s whole plan because the angel only told her the sliver of information she needed to understand right now.
Even if you don’t comprehend God’s purpose in your circumstances, can you accept his lead for this step, right now?
Lord, I accept your plan for my life. I can’t see the whole picture, but you can. It feels like you have given me some overwhelming challenges and I don’t know why, but I will trust you to work out your purposes for my life. I accept my situation. I am on board with whatever you want me to do next, no matter what it might cost me personally. I am your servant, Lord.
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