Angels must be pretty frightening as each time they appear the same greeting is given, “FEAR NOT!” I can only imagine a young girl out in the field walking home after time spent with Joseph being scared out of her wits as this man appears before her. Did he have a bright glow or was he sent as a messenger dressed in white? The Bible doesn’t go into the details but however he approached her, she was scared.
The words “you have found favor with God” may have been the calming factor that allowed her to put aside the fear and listen to the message bringing news of her soon to be baby. Well, not just any baby, but the very Son of God.
What I find most intriguing about this passage is Mary’s response to the news, “Let it be…” The indicator of Mary’s knowledge of scripture and the prophecies of the coming Messiah must of played into her reply. I can just see her mind racing with what she had been told about the Child who would one day be born in Bethlehem, that a virgin would conceive, and He would save His people from their sin.
The thought of being the chosen one must of been overwhelming but her response was obedience to the Master’s call on her life. The road ahead would be difficult. “What are my parent’s going to think? Will Joseph believe me? Will God protect me from the laws of our people?” With the thoughts of the immediate circumstance she must have begun to think of what this news really meant, “How can I raise the Son of God? Am I worthy for such an honor? Am I good enough?”
Even as we struggle at times with the ideas that we are not worthy to serve such a holy and righteous God, we have the grace to know that it is not about our goodness. God came to us when we were sinners, this is the narrative that begins with manger and continues to the cross . We don’t have to achieve a state of perfection to be used of God we just have to willing. We have to be people who, when given a task, chose the words, “Let it be.”
Listen today to what God is calling you to do. It may be simply blessing the person behind you in the drive-through line with Starbuck or it may be helping the family down the street get Christmas presents for their children. It could be committing to serve in your local church or volunteer this next year at the Boys and Girls Club in your neighborhood.
Don’t be afraid of the task God may have just for you. Be brave and ask God what He wants you to do. He WILL show you… trust me! It probably won’t come by glowing messenger, but you will know and may you reply, “Let it be.”
26 In the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent from God to a city of Galilee named Nazareth, 27 to a virgin betrothed to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David. And the virgin’s name was Mary. 28 And he came to her and said, “Greetings, O favored one, the Lord is with you!” 29 But she was greatly troubled at the saying, and tried to discern what sort of greeting this might be. 30 And the angel said to her, “Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favor with God. 31 And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus. 32 He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. And the Lord God will give to him the throne of his father David, 33 and he will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and of his kingdom there will be no end.”
34 And Mary said to the angel, “How will this be, since I am a virgin?”
35 And the angel answered her, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you; therefore the child to be born will be called holy—the Son of God. 36 And behold, your relative Elizabeth in her old age has also conceived a son, and this is the sixth month with her who was called barren. 37 For nothing will be impossible with God.” 38 And Mary said, “Behold, I am the servant of the Lord; let it be to me according to your word.” And the angel departed from her.