“The angel said to her, “Do not be afraid, Mary; for you have found favor with God. “And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you shall name Him Jesus. “He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High; and the Lord God will give Him the throne of His father David; and He will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and His kingdom will have no end.” Mary said to the angel, “How can this be, since I am a virgin?” The angel answered and said to her, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you; and for that reason the holy Child shall be called the Son of God. “And behold, even your relative Elizabeth has also conceived a son in her old age; and she who was called barren is now in her sixth month. “For nothing will be impossible with God.” And Mary said, “Behold, the bondslave of the Lord; may it be done to me according to your word.” And the angel departed from her.”
I’ve heard the story of the virgin Mary over and over throughout my lifetime. In fact, I’m sure that the majority of the people in this world know the story whether they are a follower of Jesus or not. It’s a story that is told every Christmas. It’s a story that decorates our mantle pieces around this time of year, it’s recreated in pageants and even represented in the movies we watch.
But it is more than just a story. Mary was a real life HUMAN.
I think it is so easy to forget that, especially as the virgin Mary has been so glorifed in many belief systems.
Yes, she was found worthy to birth the Saviour of the World, yes, she found favor in the eyes of the Lord, but still, she was just as human as you and me.
Let’s put ourselves in her shoes for a moment.
You are a young teenage girl. An angel visits you in the middle of the night, and tells you that you are going to give birth to the Son of God. You are already engaged to a man, so you’ve got to not only break the news to your family and friends, but also to your fiance. You are a virgin and pregnant…who is going to believe you?
You start showing. People start talking. No one believes or understands you. (It does sound unbelievable and honestly a little crazy) What do you do with the stares? What do you do with the quiet gossipy whispers as you walk by?
Remember, she was human!
How would you respond?
Could you endure 9 months of this?
I’m not sure I could if I’m being honest. It sounds so difficult, so out of the ordinary and so explainable. It takes an uncommon type of obedience and faithfulness to get through 9 months like that.
I believe that we look at the end result (the Prince of Peace coming into the world, choirs of Angels, God with us) and diminish the uncommon, difficult road that it took for this young girl to see God’s promise fulfilled.
You see, all that Mary had was a promise. And she had an unshakeable faith that her God was the Promise Keeper. Holding onto that promise, she walked out those nine months in faith, enduring every trouble that came her way because she believed that God was faithful to His word.
How does the story of Mary apply to us?
What has God called you to do? What specific assignments has He placed on your life? What hard path is He calling you to walk on right now to lead you to the place that He has called you?
Will you hold onto His promise? Will you believe that He WILL BE true to His word? When it gets difficult will you keep on going? Will you keep trusting and obeying Him?
God can do more than we can even imagine through His children who are walking in obedience and faithfulness. So let’s ask the Holy Spirit to fill us with the strength to stay the course and endure so that we can see the promises of God unfold before us.