“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, ‘Greetings, O favored one, the Lord is with you!’ But she was greatly troubled at the saying, and tried to discern what sort of greeting this might be.” (Luke 1:26-29 ESV)
What was Mary doing when the angel came? Old paintings show her reading or praying. But it might have been humbler than that. She might have been cooking or sweeping the floor. Feeding the chickens, fetching water …
And now God has another job for her—she will be mother to the Messiah, the Son of God, Jesus our Savior.
The angel says it right: “You are the favored one, and the Lord is with you!” But Mary’s mind is still with the chickens, the broom, the water. What is this greeting? What does God want from her, humble as she is?
It is not a mistake. God knew what He was doing when He chose Mary, and He made her able to do the work He called her to do. God knew what He was doing when He called you to be His dear child—to trust in His Son Jesus, your Savior, to be forgiven and made new and clean. He has work for you, too. He will carry you through it, however great or small.
Prayer: Dear Father, show me what You want me to do—and give me the Holy Spirit’s help to do it. Amen.
* Why do you think God chose Mary and not, say, a princess or scholar?
* What responsibilities has God given you in your life?
* Tell a story about a time God helped you with a job that seemed too high, hard, or strange for you.
Advent Devotions were written by Dr. Kari Vo.
Originally published in The Lutheran Hour on December 4, 2022
Used by permission from International Lutheran Laymen’s League, all rights reserved