Mary’s “Yes” allowed Love to become Incarnate.  We can become oblivious to the shock value of a familiar story: Gabriel’s startling appearance to Mary, the perplexing greeting and astonishing news.  Mary has found “favor with God” (Luke 1:40); charis theos will subsequently describe Jesus Himself (Luke 2:40).

Why Mary?

Note the LORD’s words to Samuel when choosing among Jesse’s sons: “The LORD doesn’t see things the way you see them. People judge by outward appearance, but the LORD looks at the heart” (1 Samuel 16:7).  Perhaps God’s reason for choosing Mary becomes most evident in her response to His call: “Here am I, the servant of the Lord; let it be with me according to your word.” (1:38).

God’s extraordinary love for the human race is revealed in His plan for our salvation. The grace thus offered will be costly: for Jesus, for Mary, and for God.  Jesus’ remarkable birth demonstrates that God is the God of the Impossible. The explosion of Love into human flesh was possible because of Mary’s trust and obedience.

Mary’s YES to God was a gift for all mankind. Let us humbly follow her example by accepting God’s invitations to each of us.  Consider how each of us is being called: perhaps to perform acts of love or to cultivate gratitude in adversity. We have much reason to be encouraged. Emmanuel has come to dwell with us, and of His kingdom there will be no end.

Prayer – Gracious God, give us courage to accept your invitation to choose the costly path of Love. May our love for you burn brightly and bring light to those struggling in lonely darkness. Remind us that above all, our hope is in You. Amen.