A Faithful Response Thursday, December 9, 2021
“For nothing is impossible with God”
At some point in all our lives we come face to face with situations that seem impossible. Circumstances that are confusing and frustrating, and burdens that seem insurmountable. We grapple with events and decisions we can’t seem to wrap our heads around. (Mine generally happen at 2 o’clock in the morning!) Often, fear and confusion take over. How is this ever going to work out? Unfortunately, even when I take it to the Lord in prayer, I can’t quite “let go and let God.”
At the beginning of this passage, Mary is happily planning her wedding to Joseph and thinking about their future together. I imagine she is focused on all the details that consume many brides. Having never been happier, she can hardly think of anything but the wonderful life she and Joseph are about to begin.
While drawing water from the well, Mary encounters the angel Gabriel with his message from God. Gabriel proceeds to tell Mary something that she almost certainly does not understand. He tells her she’s going to have a baby. And, not just any baby; she’s going to give birth to the Son of God. Confusion replaces the happy dreams of a beautiful wedding and a peaceful life. Mary is filled with doubt. She wonders how this news will affect her body, her reputation, her family, her relationship with Joseph? She struggles to understand, “How can this be?”
Gabriel knew Mary would be confused; and, in verse 37 Gabriel shares with Mary, and with us, God’s solemn promise, “For nothing will be impossible with God.”
Luke makes it clear in verse 38 that Mary was filled with very real doubts and very real questions. But Mary relied on her faith in God when she courageously replied, “I am the Lord’s servant,” Mary answered. “May it be to me as you have said.”
God asked Mary if she was willing to believe in the impossible. Mary yielded to God, and said, “Yes!” She didn’t have all the answers, but she trusted God’s promise – “For nothing is impossible with God!”
Mary holds out courage. She helps me face the uncertainties of life. She reminds me that because of Christ, my circumstances don’t have the last word; that even in the darkest places, I am seen and not forgotten in God’s story. She inspires me to greater faith.
Dear Lord, give us just a portion of Mary’s willingness to follow You. Help us to courageously cling to your promise, that we might yet become the people you have called us to be. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
St. John’s Lutheran Church, Salisbury, NC
This devotional is a joint project between Christmas Lutheran (Bethlehem) and St. John’s (Salisbury, NC).