Wednesday, December 19, 2012

12 Days of Christmas : Day 6 : Christmas Scripture

Kelly from Exceptionalistic, Becky from Tales of Beauty for Ashes, and I are now six days into our 12 Days of Christmas series.  You can follow the tag "12 Days of Christmas 2012" by clicking HERE. Today is about scripture.  On Wednesdays, we normally have our "Into the Word Wednesdays" link up with Kelly, Becky, and myself, as well as Kelly from The Houtz House Party and Falen from Upward Not Inward.  This post is basically the "Into The Word Wednesday" as it falls within the "12 Days of Christmas" series.  Please join us as we link up our posts on what we are learning through scripture this week!  It doesn't have to be Christmas-related scripture, although this particular post is.

Let's begin with the angel Gabriel announcing to Mary that she will conceive and give birth to a son.

Luke 1:26-38 {New Living Translation (NLT)}

The Birth of Jesus Foretold

26 In the sixth month of Elizabeth’s pregnancy, God sent the angel Gabriel to Nazareth, a village in Galilee, 27 to a virgin named Mary. She was engaged to be married to a man named Joseph, a descendant of King David. 28 Gabriel appeared to her and said, “Greetings, favored woman! The Lord is with you![a]

29 Confused and disturbed, Mary tried to think what the angel could mean. 30 “Don’t be afraid, Mary,” the angel told her, “for you have found favor with God! 31 You will conceive and give birth to a son, and you will name him Jesus. 32 He will be very great and will be called the Son of the Most High. The Lord God will give him the throne of his ancestor David. 33 And he will reign over Israel[b] forever; his Kingdom will never end!”

34 Mary asked the angel, “But how can this happen? I am a virgin.”

35 The angel replied, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you. So the baby to be born will be holy, and he will be called the Son of God. 36 What’s more, your relative Elizabeth has become pregnant in her old age! People used to say she was barren, but she has conceived a son and is now in her sixth month. 37 For nothing is impossible with God.[c]

38 Mary responded, “I am the Lord’s servant. May everything you have said about me come true.” And then the angel left her.

As I read this story, I can't even imagine what Mary, as a young girl, would have been thinking as she received this news.  There is no way to put myself in her shoes.  An angel visits her and relays a message to her from God that she is pregnant.  Not only is she pregnant, but she is unmarried and she is a virgin!  I am pretty sure that I, too, would be confused and disturbed! {v. 29}  But the angel assures her that she has found favor with God.  It makes me wonder what this girl, Mary, was like as a person prior to this news.  She must have been someone incredibly special.  I imagine her to be the sort of person you'd see around town who you might look at and just know that there was something different, something special about her.

How would I have reacted to the news if I were Mary?  I would have been full of questions, that is for sure.  How could this have happened?  How?  Why me?  What am I supposed to tell my family?  My fiance??  But she didn't see to react the way anyone I know might have reacted.  Oh, I am sure there must have been at least a question or two in her mind.  She received the news that she was pregnant, but she received news that her baby {a son} would be the holy Son of God.  

Mary responded in faith and in trust to God's call. She responded in acceptance and willingness to go through what God was calling her to do.  

We can say with hindsight that what Mary was submitting to was something that would be unimaginable for us.  To know that the child to be given birth to would ultimately die a horrific death - who can imagine setting themselves up for that?  Mary didn't know this was to be her son's fate when she heard this news.  She did not know anything of the life that her son would live from the time he would be born til the time he would die and then rise again.  

Yet she submitted herself to God's will.

We may not be receiving visits from angels, but it is possible that we are hearing from God in some way in our lives.  Are we listening?  What is God calling us to do in our lives?  How are we responding to the things that He is asking of us?  Are we as willing as Mary to submit to Him?

Feel free to grab the button below and be sure to link up your posts sharing your own favorite Christmas memories!  Don't forget to enter our giveaway which we posted on Day 5!

12 Days of Christmas 2012

Here's what we have coming up in our series so you can plan to share your posts in the days ahead:

12/20: Christmas Tree: picture-only post of tree and ornaments
12/21: Christmas Song: favorite holiday song and why
12/22: Christmas Creations: last minute Pinterest-inspired gifts
12/23: Christmas Future: new tradition to put into place next year
12/24: Christmas Eve: favorite traditions, routines, or plans
12/25: Christmas Meaning: what Christmas means to us


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