“This Christmas, may we be like Mary, willing to surrender all our hopes, plans to the Lord.”
November 2020, we had just gotten home from Miss USA in Memphis, Tennessee. It was late in the evening and we were tired after being gone a week and driving all day. We parked, unloaded the car (it took 100 trips because Megan had sooo much stuff), and sat down to have a cup of tea when the back door flew open! “ Hello, Hello!” It was Ian and Narel! They were unable to go to Memphis with us, so we thought they were just popping by. “We have a gift for you,” Narel said? “A gift?” I asked. “Yes, a gift! Open it!” I’m not a surprise kind of girl, so I kept asking more questions like that was going to change the situation or suddenly tell me what was in the box. We sat down at the table and she brought out a little box. “Open it, open it, we couldn’t wait!” they said. I slowly opened the box. I felt all eyes on me and my heart was racing. There, amongst lots of blue swirly paper, was an ultrasound photo and the cutest little pair of blue booties you’ve ever seen! My eyes immediately got as big as saucers, my hand went over my mouth (I don’t know why people do that), and I started to scream with delight. Then Sean joined me, and we started jumping up and down — and anything past that, I do not remember! However, the whole thing is documented by our kids for historical purposes! My response was one of pure joy when I heard that I was going to be a grandma! I started thinking of all the things that I would do to get the house ready for his arrival!
Now, imagine having an angel appear before you with the message that you have been chosen to birth the Savior of the World! (Oh, and by the way, you are a virgin and betrothed to someone already… That’s not awkward or anything! Especially in that day and age!) How would you have reacted? If you knew all that you would face, would you try to talk God out of it, or would you respond like Mary did? Mary responded to the call of God on her life with humility when she answered “Who, me? Surely I am not qualified!” Yet, ultimately, she didn’t allow her sense of humility to keep her from accepting the Lord’s will for her life. Saying yes to the Lord meant being misunderstood by pretty much everyone — including her fiancé, Joseph. Mary risked everything to answer the call of God on her life. She risked her reputation and her future, yet she chose to follow Him. She would face public embarrassment and even punishment for accepting God’s will, but was still able to praise God for his blessing on her life!
We know Mary’s response as The Magnificat: Mary’s Song of Praise
‘Oh, how I praise the Lord. How I rejoice in God my Savior!
For he took notice of his lowly servant girl, and now generation after generation will call me blessed.
For he, the Mighty One, is holy, and he has done great things for me.
His mercy goes on from generation to generation, to all who fear him.
His mighty arm does tremendous things!
How he scatters the proud and haughty ones! He has taken princes from their thrones and exalted the lowly.
He has satisfied the hungry with good things and sent the rich away with empty hands.
And how he has helped his servant, Israel! He has not forgotten his promise to be merciful.
For he promised our ancestors — Abraham and his children — to be merciful to them forever!’”
Mary demonstrated the right response to God’s call on her life. She went forward to meet her circumstances with confidence and joy. She knew that her decision would bless others and ultimately the world. What circumstances are you facing this Christmas? Do you have hopes and plans that haven’t come to pass yet? Are you holding back because of fear or doubt? You can trust God! He is faithful to complete what He has started! He is smack dab in the middle of your situation with you! He will never leave you or forsake you! He has the ultimate plan! This Christmas, may we be like Mary, willing to surrender all our hopes, plans to the Lord. May we praise Him in the middle of our circumstances knowing that He is good all the time and his mercy endures forever!