Ave Maria

David Bast

READ : Luke 1:26-38

“. . . let it be to me according to your word.” (v. 38)

The modern prejudice is that people in earlier times accepted stories of angels and supernatural births because they didn’t know any better, but we understand that such things must be legendary. Well, listen to Mary’s response when Gabriel says she will bear a child: “How will this be, since I am a virgin?” Just because Mary didn’t know the theory of relativity doesn’t mean she didn’t know the facts of life.

The key thing, though, is what Mary says next. “I am the Lord’s servant. Let it be to me according to your word.” Did Mary know what that submission would cost her? She could not have foreseen all the honors that would come to her eventually. But she could very well imagine a difficult interview with Joseph. How could she possibly explain to him? Then there was the shame and even the threat of death for someone suspected of adultery in a conservative place like Nazareth. God wasn’t asking much of her; just to risk her marriage and her life. And for what? Who knows?

But Mary said yes to God, come what may. Mary’s obedience would cost her, but she was willing to pay the price. That’s what real faith is like. Faith stakes everything on the word of God, and accepts the consequences.


Thank you, Lord, for Mary, a hero of faith.