Preparing for Advent | Mary’s Introduction | Luke 1.26-33 |

by | Dec 17, 2022

“In the sixth month of Elizabeth’s pregnancy, God sent the angel Gabriel to Nazareth, a town in Galilee, 27 to a virgin pledged to be married to a man named Joseph, a descendant of David. The virgin’s name was Mary. 28 The angel went to her and said, “Greetings, you who are highly favored! The Lord is with you.” 29 Mary was greatly troubled at his words and wondered what kind of greeting this might be. 30 But the angel said to her, “Do not be afraid, Mary; you have found favor with God. 31 You will conceive and give birth to a son, and you are to call him Jesus. 32 He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. The Lord God will give him the throne of his father David, 33 and he will reign over Jacob’s descendants forever; his kingdom will never end.” Luke 1.26-33

Up until this time, the world had never heard of Mary, or Jesus for that matter. Mary was a virgin, living in a random Jewish village in Nazareth in Northern Galilee. She was engaged to Joseph but not yet married. Out of all the women in history, out of all the virgins living for the Lord, God chose this one. He could have selected another, one more prominent, one more mature, but he chose Mary to bear the Son of the Most High.

When the angel shows up it’s a complete surprise. “Greetings,” Gabriel says, “You who are highly favored! The Lord is with you.” Mary, rightly so, was “great troubled at his words and wondered what kind of greeting this might be.” But Gabriel told her not to be afraid and that God had found favor with her. So much so that she was selected to bear within her womb the Son of God. One who will be given “the throne of his father David, and reign over Jacob’s descendants forever.” In addition, Gabriel said, “His kingdom will never end.”

Mary was a big deal but the bigger deal was conceived inside of her by the power of God through the Holy Spirit. Jesus, the one who would save all people from their sins, was growing inside this holy woman of God. He was the one truly featured in Mary’s introduction. Mary moved from obscurity into prominence, a name now that every Christian would know.

As in many biblical stories, God invites people into his activity. The divine Redeemer calls on people like you, and me, and Mary to reflect his glory, communicate his way of salvation, and help people find help in their time of need. God uses people like us, willing and able, frail and fragile, to accomplish the purpose of making disciples, growing the Kingdom and bringing about that Kingdom to earth. He uses us to communicate his goodness to the world at large.

Just as God selected this virgin from Nazareth, so God has a task for each of us. The task begins with us entering into a love relationship with the Most High God. It continues as we submit to following him and doing that which he puts before us. During this advent season, let us look for opportunities to be used by God, chances to spread his message, convey his love and communicate the way of salvation to all we meet. By his grace and for his glory.

“O Lord God, Mary was your servant. Pure and holy, finding favor with you, you invited her into your plan to save us by giving her Jesus. You also want to use each of us to share your good news with others. You have filled us with the power of your Holy Spirit so all might know your love. Come now, King of Creation, make your way within my heart. Guide my path, direct my steps, helps me be the person you have called and created me to be. For you are good and your love endures forever.” Amen