The Gospel of Luke 1:26-38
In the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent by God to a town in Galilee called Nazareth, to a virgin engaged to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David. The virgin’s name was Mary. And he came to her and said, “Greetings, favored one! The Lord is with you.” But she was much perplexed by his words and pondered what sort of greeting this might be. The angel said to her, “Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favor with God. And now, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you will name him 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 ancestor David. He will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and of his kingdom there will be no end.” Mary said to the angel, “How can this be, since I am a virgin?” 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 holy; he will be called Son of God. And now, your relative Elizabeth in her old age has also conceived a son; and this is the sixth month for her who was said to be barren. For nothing will be impossible with God.” Then Mary said, “Here am I, the servant of the Lord; let it be with me according to your word.” Then the angel departed from her.
Let us pray: The Song of Mary Magnificat: Luke 1:46-55
My soul proclaims the greatness of the Lord, my spirit rejoices in God my Savior; for he has looked with favor on his lowly servant. From this day all generations will call me blessed: The Almighty has done great things for me, and holy is his Name.He has mercy on those who fear him in every generation. He has shown the strength of his arm, he has scattered the proud in their conceit. He has cast down the mighty from their thrones, * and has lifted up the lowly. He has filled the hungry with good things, and the rich he has sent away empty. He has come to the help of his servant Israel, for he has remembered his promise of mercy, The promise he made to our fathers, to Abraham and his children forever.
How would you respond if an angel came to you and said “Greetings?” Would you be afraid, or would you react as Mary did? “Here am I, the servant of the Lord”. The angel reassured her and said do not be afraid. If we trust in God that greeting from an angel should not cause us to be afraid. As faithful disciples of Christ, we, too, have been called to do new and exciting things. God has blessed us with unique gifts and talents, and God has placed us in opportunities to use and share the gifts. We may wonder at times whether we understand what we are called to do. The task often seems impossible. We know ourselves only too well, our weaknesses, our failings, our lack of experience. What do you think? Do things just happen, or is there some overall plan at work here in which everything fits together? Seldom can we say why things happen as they do. More often than not, we don’t have all the information we need. If we waited until all our questions were answered, we’d never do anything. So, we take what we know and use our best judgment and take a leap of faith. If God’s Spirit was able to do what was considered the impossible with Elizabeth and Mary, who knows what “impossible” ventures God is planning for you? The angel’s assurance to Mary is also a word of comfort to each of us: “Don’t be afraid, for you have found favor with God. The Holy Spirit will be with you.” if you act in good faith.
Let us Pray: Lord, we may feel that you have called us to impossibilities, as You called Elizabeth and Mary to do the humanly impossible, but we also know that Your mighty power worked in them, for nothing is impossible for You. We pray that You will work Your mighty power in our lives too, so together we can accomplish all Your purposes through us. We say with Mary, “I am the Lord’s servant.” May all Your words be fulfilled. Amen.