Mary the mother of Jesus was blessed and highly favored of all women even though at the time it did not seem to be so. There were other women, even other virgins but she was especially chosen. It was a rare privilege ...but it may have also seemed like a burden too heavy to ask any to bear.
Luke 1:28 And the angel came in unto her, and said, Hail, thou that art highly favored, the Lord is with thee: blessed art thou among women.
The angel does not say she will be, but that she is already favored. There are some more mysterious concepts in the word of God …one of them is the issue of favor. For God told Moses, I will have mercy on whom I will have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I will have compassion.
But the favor on Mary was also a test … who wants to carry a child fathered by the Holy Ghost?…who needs the responsibility of mothering a baby who came solely to die for the sins of men?… who really wants to provide the home for the Lamb of God who taketh away the sins of the world? Who can bear the pain of seeing her son bear the chastisement for all the sins of mankind? Only a truly prepared heart that loves God - saying use me Lord.
Like everyone else, Mary would have wanted a normal life … a dream home, a loving husband and a child she could rock in her arms as hers …but Jesus would never be Mary’s … He was God. Why would she want to make her body available for this unprecedented visitation?
Do you think the thought of getting rid of this child crossed her mind? Would the Devil have suggested that she would never survive the shame … no one would believe in a divine conception … and the baby would always be secretly termed the product of Mary’s illicit liaisons. Indeed, many who heard of the pregnancy would advise Joseph to put her away quietly. How is it that being highly favored can be troubling? Do not abort the destiny God has ordained to be birthed. Do not put away what God has ordered even though many advisers urge you to do so. Soon you will see. Be still ...fear not.
Being highly favored has its challenges … but the message of Christmas continues with the words “… for with God nothing shall be impossible ... behold the handmaid of the Lord; be it unto me according to thy word…” words coming from a meek and obedient spirit.
I wish to remind someone reading this blog that God does the impossible and His favor may be unreasonable and the promise may be unfathomable in its mode of execution … still I dare to say to you " it will be well with you" - according to His word. God’s favor is accompanied by a capability that has no limit … that stretches possibilities beyond known realms of reason and previous experience.
Have a wonderful season of peace as you celebrate the birth of the joy of the whole earth - the hope of the world – Jesus our Savior. But do remember, it is often easier to say Merry Christmas than to let God have His way in your life. May you find fresh grace.