I admire Mary. I admire her ability first to face an angel, then to voice her questions, and finally to surrender herself to the angel’s words and to God’s working. As I have heard this story over the years, I have often wondered how many young girls Gabriel visited before he got to Mary and found someone willing to cooperate with what God wanted to do. I can imagine a weary and harried Gabriel looking at a long list of candidates’ names, crossing them off one by one as young women breeze past him (unaware that God is trying to get their attention). . . . The Bible doesn’t tell us that Mary is the first, the only one, considered. . . . All we know for sure is that Mary is the one who agrees—and that only after voicing her question and getting an answer.
—Mary Lou Redding, While We Wait: Living the Questions of Advent (Upper Room Books, 2002)
What do you suppose Mary’s life was like in the days and months following her encounter with the angel Gabriel? Join the conversation.
The angel said, “Don’t be afraid, Mary. God is honoring you. Look! You will conceive and give birth to a son, and you will name him Jesus. He will be great and he will be called the Son of the Most High. . . .
Then Mary said to the angel, “How will this happen since I haven’t had sexual relations with a man?”
—Luke 1:30-32, 34 (CEB)
Prayer for the Week
Holy God, help us to hear you calling us home during Advent and guide us to set aside time for reflection on the wonder of your Son’s birth. Thank you for the gift of Jesus Christ. Help us to focus on him and to show his compassion and love to others during this season. Amen.
Submit your prayer to The Upper Room.
Show your loved ones how much you care by giving them Spirit Boosters, daily reminders that they still have purpose, no matter their age.
(Courtesy of Vanderbilt Divinity Library)
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