Read: Luke 1:26-45
And the angel said to her, “Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favor with God.” (v. 30)
Mary was about to become an unwed pregnant teen, in danger of stoning, rejection, and separation from those she knew and loved. She was about to travel a hard 70 miles at full term. She was about to give birth under less-than-favorable circumstances and lay the child from God in an animal trough. Some might say, “If this is favor with God, I’m not sure I want it!”
But Mary gave her willing consent, and never seemed to waver. When the angel Gabriel told her to not be afraid, she listened, and Joseph trusted the angelic messengers that visited him as well. Ponder for a moment what might have happened if either had allowed their fears to overwhelm their trust of God.
We learn from the angel’s announcement that “favor with God” does not always equal good news for our own carefully constructed reality. The story God is telling is so much bigger than we can imagine. When he makes his advent, we often don’t know what to do with it, but we have a part to play in the big story too, and are told over and over in Scripture we don’t have to be afraid. The “mighty ones who do his bidding” are near (Ps. 103:20 NIV).
Giver of good gifts, may I find favor with you too, and enough angelic help to calm my fears, trust your word, and do your will.