The ABC’s of Lent | Mary | Luke 1.46 |

by | Mar 20, 2020

Today is the “M” in our ABC’s of Lent and it brings us to Mary the mother of Jesus. Mary, who was a virgin, conceived by the Holy Spirit, bore the Savior of the World. Mary, chosen among all women, to carry Jesus and to raise him as her son.

I often believe the Catholics give too much credit to Mary and the Protestants too little. Mary was amazing and was chosen by God for a special purpose. But so was Moses, David, Abraham, and Rachel. She was not without sin even though Mary carried in her womb the perfect, blameless Lamb of God. (See 1 John 3.5, 2 Corinthians 5.21 regarding the purity of Christ).

Yet what I love most about Mary is her willingness to be used by God. In what scholars call the “Magnificat,” Mary has just been visited by an angel of the Lord telling her what she is to do. After a few questions like — “How can this be since I am a virgin?” — the angel tells her God has it all taken care of…. the Holy Spirit will come upon her, and she will give birth to a son who will save the world from their sins (my paraphrase).

How might an ordinary person respond to this? “No way God!” “You must be out of your mind!” Or, “I am not worthy for such a task!” But not Mary, the first words out of her mouth are praise – “My soul glorifies the Lord and my spirit rejoices in God in my Savior.” Beautiful. Stunning, really. Appreciative. Honored.

Take a few moments to read the entire response of Mary to God below taken from Luke 1.46-55:

“And Mary said: “My soul glorifies the Lord
47     and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior,
48 for he has been mindful
    of the humble state of his servant.
From now on all generations will call me blessed,
49     for the Mighty One has done great things for me—
    holy is his name.
50 His mercy extends to those who fear him,
    from generation to generation.
51 He has performed mighty deeds with his arm;
    he has scattered those who are proud in their inmost thoughts.
52 He has brought down rulers from their thrones
    but has lifted up the humble.
53 He has filled the hungry with good things
    but has sent the rich away empty.
54 He has helped his servant Israel,
    remembering to be merciful
55 to Abraham and his descendants forever,
    just as he promised our ancestors.”

Mary’s response to being used by God can be ourS as well. With the COVID-19 virus in full swing, attackng our nation and our world, people need us to be representatives of the King. They need us to show mercy, compassion and grace to the millions in fear and hurting from this pandemic.

Just as Mary said yes to an overwhelming assignment from God, I wonder what our response will be when God tells us to move forward with his mission of making disciples and reaching the lost with Jesus’ love.

“O Lord God, you are faithful. Even when disaster strikes, our world is paralyzed, fear will not win. You have a plan and a purpose for each of us. Just as you did for Mary, so you do for all of us. You have a plan to bring the world to yourself, to reveal yourself as Savior, Healer, God and Father. Come now, Holy Spirit, fill me with your power and might. For you are good and your love endures forever.” Amen