Bible Passage related to the mystery: Luke 1: 26-38
In the sixth month, the angel Gabriel was sent from God to a city of Galilee named Nazareth, to a virgin betrothed to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David; and the virgin’s name was Mary. And he came to her and said, “Hail full of grace, the Lord is with you!” But she was greatly troubled at the saying and considered in her mind what sort of greeting this might be. And the angel said to her, “Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favour with God. And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus.
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, and he will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and of his kingdom, there will be no end.”
And Mary said to the angel, “How can this be since I have no husband?” And the angel said to 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.
And behold, your kinswoman Elizabeth in her old age has also conceived a son; and this is the sixth month with her who was called barren. For with God nothing will be impossible.” And Mary said, “Behold I am the handmaid of the Lord; let it be to me according to your word.” And the angel departed from her.
“I am the handmaid of the Lord; let it be to me according to your word.”
– This acceptance of Mary was the first step in the fulfilment of God’s salvific plan. The simple village girl that she was, Mary, should have ideally said ‘no’ to what was expected of her. She being a virgin, how could she accept a baby in her womb? How would she convince people that it was by the Holy Spirit that she conceived? Nobody would believe her and finally stone her to death, as was the practice in those days.
The different fears that might have been in Mary’s mind as the angel announced:
- What if my community comes to know about my pregnancy? Not only will they kill me but also humiliate my parents and family.
- What about my parents? All these years of trust that I had built will be shattered in a moment. They will not trust me any more. They will feel cheated.
- Joseph, what will he think of me when he gets this news? He will not love me anymore. He will reject me.
- And me – how will I handle this pregnancy? I’m so young and have no idea what goes into being pregnant. The different changes that will take place within me – my physical changes, my hormonal and psychological changes. How will I handle all this? That too all on my own (everyone would be rejecting me of course.)
Despite all these BIG worldly fears, Mary said ‘Yes’ to the GREATER plan of God. Mary, in her simplicity just trusted the Father. She was obedient and accepted the task assigned to her. What happened to those REAL fears? They had to disappear. When you trust the Father, He will never leave you. Joseph accepted Mary, convinced that it was God’s son that was to be born of her. There was no humiliation, rather Joseph took up all the responsibilities and took good care of Mary, supporting her all along.
The result: Mary’s acceptance brought forth the Saviour of the world thereby making her the mother of God. She was exalted to the position of becoming the Queen of Heaven.
- Am I willing to surrender to the will of the Father? Or will I try to find out what He wants from me?
- Am I able to overcome all the fears that the world poses before me or am I drowned in uncertainties and anxieties?
- Am I willing to say ‘Yes’ to what God asks of me today – Even when situations seem to be difficult?
I have struggled with allowing God to take control of my life completely. Being an independent educated girl, I always had confidence in my intelligence and the way I perceived things – ‘I know the best for me.’ Unfortunately, with this thinking and trying to take control of everything, I ended up messing it all the more, not only for myself but also for my husband and family.
This mystery made me realize how life becomes simple and easy just by letting go – letting go of worldly fears and surrendering to the Father with a ‘yes.’
As I learned to surrender in small ways, I started experiencing the peace and calm of the Lord in my life and my family. Mary in her simplicity taught me to be simple and accept that ‘I am the handmaid of the Lord’ and I am ready for whatever God has in store for me.
Lord, help me to understand and accept God’s great plan in my life. As Mary, instead of being consumed by fears agreed to the will of the Father, let me also be willing to always say ‘yes’ to whatever the Father leads me into. Help me to surrender to His will completely. ‘Let your kingdom come, let your will be done.’
Virtue to learn from Mother Mary: Complete Surrender