Sunday, December 17
Today's reading: Luke 1:26-38
With Christmas a little over a week away, we’re going to take a break from John (and its focus on Jesus’ final days on earth) and turn to the Christmas story found in the opening chapters of Luke and Matthew. The Bible is rich with details about Jesus’ human arrival on earth. So let’s read this miraculous account with inquisitive eyes so we can get an even fuller grasp of the unfolding of God’s love for us.
I'm always moved by Mary's encounter with the angel Gabriel. Mary's response upon receiving such incredible news--and most definitely shocking news--(that she is going to conceive a baby by the Holy Spirit who would be the Son of God in human form) is nothing less than amazing. This young, teenage girl is so committed to God that she believes what she's told and immediately and willingly submits her all to carrying out God's purpose and plan.
So often when God introduces change into our lives, our initial response is not submission but is instead to doubt and question, arguement and negotiation with God, delay in taking action, ignoring the situation or to following our own path. We see none of this with Mary. She asks a question because she doesn't comprehend how she could have a baby as a virgin--but her question isn't asked with a tone of doubt, but rather with a tone of clarification given the strangeness of the news she has just received. And once Gabriel explains how she will conceive and what that means, her immediate response is, "Behold, I am the servant of the Lord; let it be to me according to your word" (vs. 38).
"God, thank you for giving us the details of this encounter and showing us Mary's beautiful example. Help us respond like Mary as we live for You."
How do you tend to respond when life circumstances change unexpectedly? What stands out to you most from Mary's example, and why? What did this passage reveal to you about God? Tami
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