During this Christmas season, we are presented with many opportunities to remember Mary as a mother. Every manger scene we see has Mary with her precious baby Jesus. This morning as I gazed at the manger scene set up in our church, I saw Mary and Joseph gazing in awe upon their baby boy, separated by a donkey. Yup. A donkey. I almost burst out laughing as I thought about it. In reality Mary and Joseph were probably at least holding hands, but more likely Joseph had his arm around Mary as they both looked down at Jesus, smiling at his sleeping form just as new parents all around the world do.
I am always in awe of a newborn. I can sit there for hours and just gaze at a sleeping baby. It’s better than any t.v. show. And when that baby awakes, so many things cause me to laugh in wonder: how the baby tries to look around but his eyes cross, how the baby stares in a specific spot almost as if they see their guardian angel, how a total look of concentration will fill a diaper. I picture Mary and Joseph gazing at their little baby thinking the same things, and so much more. Not only do they have this tiny baby, but He is the Son of God (Luke 1:31-32). Wow.
Mary said YES when the angel asked her to bear a baby. Mary said YES to God. Her YES permitted God’s Holy Spirit to overshadow her. She spent the rest of her days in awe and wonder over what that YES meant. Not only did she bear the Son of God, but she had authority over Him. She raised her child, but He was obedient to her and to Joseph (Luke 2:52). She watched Him grow into a man and work as a carpenter. He saw Him in the temple, learning and then teaching. She saw Him begin His public ministry, performing miracles and teaching the people. She saw Him suffer and die. She saw Him rise from the dead, she saw Him ascend to heaven (Luke 23 and 24). And still her YES wasn’t done.
As the mother of the Risen Jesus, she would have had more to do. There was the building of the church. There was the teaching of the people. There were the sick and imprisoned to visit. And with our faith we believe that even from Heaven her work is not done. Her YES still continues.
Thank you, Mary, for your YES. Thank you for your courage and your steadfast commitment to the Lord. Thank you for your witness to me and my desire to do as you did and give my YES, my all to God. Pray for me as I ask God for the strength and the courage necessary to allow Him to work in me and through me, day to day, year to year. Amen.