The Christmas Story Part 2: Mary and Joseph
Six months after Elizabeth had become pregnant, God sent the angel Gabriel to Nazareth, a city in Galilee. The angel went to a virgin promised in marriage to a descendant of David named Joseph. The virgin’s name was Mary. When the angel entered her home, he greeted her and said,
“You are favoured by the Lord! The Lord is with you.”
She was startled by what the angel said and tried to figure out what this greeting meant. The angel told her,
“Don’t be afraid, Mary. You have found favour with God. You will become pregnant, give birth to a son, and name him Jesus. He will be a great man and will be called the Son of the Most High. The Lord God will give him the throne of his ancestor David. Your son will be king of Jacob’s people forever, and his kingdom will never end.”
Mary asked the angel,
“How can this be? I’m a virgin.”
The angel answered her,
“The Holy Spirit will come to you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you. Therefore, the holy child developing inside you will be called the Son of God. Elizabeth, your relative, is six months pregnant with a son in her old age. People said she couldn’t have a child. But nothing is impossible for God.”
“I am the Lord’s servant. Let everything you’ve said happen to me.”
Then the angel left her.
These verses describe when the Angel Gabriel came to visit Mary, to tell her that she was to give birth to the son of God. This must have been such a shock to Mary, and would have been very scary as well as confusing- how could this miracle happen? However she would have felt so honoured to have been chosen by the Lord God, and would have greatly increased her faith in what God can really do.
Although we cannot hear directly from God in this day and age, we can look for ‘angels’ in our own lives, who guide us towards God’s plan. Think back on your life and where someone may have helped you towards being who you are today- could they have been an angel? God opens doors to his plan for us, and we need to look for them so we can stay in line with what he has in store for us.
Praying is also a way of communicating with God. God hears our requests in prayers, and it’s important to look for his answers, and say thank you for them. Mary would have prayed a lot during her life, especially when she was taking care of Jesus, however she always saw the answers to her prayers, particularly manifesting themselves in Jesus and what she saw that he did for mankind. God always kept her safe
Sometimes God’s plan can be scary, like it was for Mary when she was visited by the angel, but we know that God is always in control, and works for our good. Mary may have been scared to begin with, but her fear became the greatest gift that has ever been- Jesus Christ. She trusted in God, as shown in verse 38, and the Lord gave her an abundant gift.
“Nothing is impossible for God.”