Jen’s Gem: Nothing is Impossible With God!
A Christmas song that has risen in popularity in recent years is “Mary, Did You Know.” This inspiring tune has been covered by the likes of Pentatonix and even the late Glen Campbell. If you’ve not heard it on the radio over the past few weeks, I invite you to take a listen.
The lyrics tell the story of Mary, the mother of Jesus and the unfathomable idea that she would give birth to the Son of God. With each line, the songwriter depicts the many wonders that Jesus would perform throughout His short life – from walking on water to giving sight to the blind to eventually rising from the dead.
As a teenager, living in a small town, these miracles had to have been beyond her imagination. I’m certain they are beyond even our own. We live in an age of cynicism and doubt, where faith in anything is questioned. With a multitude of broken promises by so many, it’s understandable that we’d struggle with such things.
As Christmas draws near, I’ve contemplated Mary’s actions when the angel Gabriel came to call. First, she had to deal with seeing an angel. That must’ve been quite a sight! After settling into a bit of calmness, she is told something that’s beyond anyone’s comprehension.
“Then 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 bring forth a Son, and shall call His name Jesus…” Luke 1:30-31.
When she puzzles over the physical impossibility of this, she is given this as an answer:
“And the angel answered and said to her, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Highest will overshadow you; therefore, also, that Holy One who is to be born will be called the Son of God. Now indeed, Elizabeth your relative has also conceived a son in her old age; and this is now the sixth month for her who was called barren. For with God nothing will be impossible.” Luke 1:35-37
Let’s hold on a moment. What? This will happen how? My child will be who?
Can you even imagine what must’ve been going through Mary’s mind at that moment? As a mother of two, I remember the exact moment I found out I was pregnant and believe me, it was far from what Mary experienced.
However, Mary’s final words to Gabriel before he left are really the critical piece of the story and quite frankly, the only reason there is a Christmas story.
“Then Mary said, “Behold the maidservant of the Lord! Let it be to me according to your word.” And the angel departed from her.” Luke 1:38
In seconds, perhaps minutes, Mary was not only visited by an angel, but was told that she was so favored by God that she’d bear His Son. And she said yes.
Whoa. With no idea of how this all would happen, or what this baby would be like, or what challenges she’d have to face, or even what would happen to Him during his life, she still said yes. She knew none of this and still, she said yes. She did as she was instructed by God for whom she had the utmost faith and trust.
Somehow, she knew it’d all be ok.
I have to wonder, if presented with a similar proposition, would you or anyone you know have had the same response? Would anyone in these modern times have said yes? Would we have that level of faith and trust in God?
If we break this down a bit, it may help to understand why Mary responded as she did. First, she intimately knew the God for which the angel spoke of. She had a relationship with Him so he was not a stranger to her. Second, she had deep faith and had seen the goodness of the Lord in that the angel spoke of her favor with Him. Third, this God who’d been with her as a trusted guide and friend throughout her life, asked her to do something for Him. Why wouldn’t she respond in the affirmative?
I want to encourage you to take a moment during this Christmas season to examine your relationship with God. Is it all you’d like it to be? If you’re uncertain, put yourself in Mary’s shoes and see if your answer would align with hers. If not, ask yourself and even ask God, why it doesn’t. Then as you prepare for the new year, be open to hearing the answers.