Mary, the mother of Jesus, was no more than a teenager when the Angel of The Lord came upon her with the news “you will be with child.” Imagining how she must have felt is impossible! Even with the cultural differences, most teenagers have their heads in the clouds. In Mary’s case, the Maker of the clouds came down to her, bringing this extraordinary as well as troubling news.

Mary was betrothed to Joseph, meaning she was engaged to be married; a marriage that was no doubt an arrangement made not by her but on behalf of her parents. In our current generation, it is difficult to have a full appreciation for Mary’s dilemma. She was faithful to Joseph. But, who would believe her and how could Mary prove she was telling the truth? Would she be stoned to death, a requirement of The Law for such an offense? Still, Mary’s response to God was, “I am the Lord’s servant. May it be to me as you have said.” Luke 2:38, NIV.

As you and I travel through Advent preparing to celebrate the birth of Jesus, what is The Holy Spirit saying to you? Is He nudging you to do something that sounds hard? Perhaps it is something as simple as setting aside the time to be still with God even though the idea may seem impossible when there is so much shopping and gift wrapping to do.

At a recent retreat, the leader challenged each participant to be intentional in finding quiet time; intentionality when the “tyranny of the urgent” threatens. I pray that each of us will take the time to “ponder” the Gift of God, His Son and our Savior, Jesus Christ.

Jesus is Immanuel, God with us. How amazing!

Sherry Sharp