What a sweet Christmas post! I love getting to hear the whole nativity story, but focusing on Mary put more of a perspective into the story which we’ve all heard many times- great post!
Originally posted on My Story, My Song by Paige Givens.
“7 And she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no guest room available for them.8 And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night. 9 An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. 10 But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people. 11 Today in the town of David a Saviorhas been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord. 12 This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.”13 Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying,
14 “Glory to God in the highest heaven,
and on earth peace to those on whom his favor rests.”
15 When the angels had left them and gone into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, “Let’s go to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has told us about.”16 So they hurried off and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby, who was lying in the manger. 17 When they had seen him, they spread the word concerning what had been told them about this child, 18 and all who heard it were amazed at what the shepherds said to them. 19 But Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart.” Luke 2:7-19 (NIV)
To anyone else, she was just an ordinary girl who went about her business quietly. But to God, Mary was someone very special. She had found favor in His eyes. Mary was chosen to be the mother of Jesus, the Savior born into this world through a miraculous virgin birth.
From the things I know of Mary (as she is portrayed in the Gospels, particularly the book of Luke), I picture her to be a young girl, quiet and gentle. I picture her to be pleasing to her family and friends. I think of her as one who silently watches and contemplates as she works diligently, even while those around her are scurrying busily to complete their tasks.
Can you imagine how this rule-following, people-pleasing young girl felt when she learned that she had found favor with the Almighty God?
And then, can you imagine how she felt when she realized the full implications of living her life as a young, unmarried girl who was suddenly mysteriously pregnant?
I’m sure she did a lot of pondering. If it was me in my very imperfect form, I would have wanted to do a lot of explaining to others. And then I would have wanted to do a lot of hiding when the stares and the whispers and the outright condemnation came. And then I would have wanted to do a lot of begging when my betrothed wanted to “divorce me quietly.”
I would have done some mourning when I had to leave my home and family, especially at a time when I was “great with child”.
What did she do? What did she do when the first pains came and she had no place to lay down? No shelter over her head? No mother’s hand to hold on to?
What did she say when she realized that the old barn was really it? That she was going to have to lay down on the grimy, dirty ground and have the Baby that was going to save the world?
What did she think when He was born? When she was able to hold her Creator in her arms? What went through her mind when she looked into the eyes of the One who could see into her soul?
How about when the special occasion was crashed by a bunch of shepherds and wise men who wanted to see and worship the Baby? How did she react to their entrance?
I’ve always wondered…did she know? Did she know what He would go through some 33 years later? The angel had told her that He was the long-awaited Messiah. Did she know what would be required of Him to save the souls of all of us? To save her own soul?
“But Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart.” Luke 2:19 (NIV)
She tucked away the events of His birth in her heart and thought about them often, as all mothers do. She had the best war stories of all, I’m sure. While the other ladies talked about how long their labors lasted, how bad their pains were, all she would have had to say was “I had to lay in the floor of a barn with no one’s help but Joseph…”
I can just see their faces now…”You win, Mary!”
And what about His first words? I’m sure she treasured them, too. And His first toddly, wobbly steps. The first time He proudly built something with His carpenter father, Joseph.
Did she remember those first steps as she heard the wondrous recounts of the Savior who walked on the water? Did she remember His first cries as He preached to a crowd of thousands? Did she recall bandaging His little boy-wounds as He healed the sick and the weak with just a touch of His hands?
Did she remember the first time He called her Mama as she stood at the foot of the cross where He hung dying? When He took care of her, even in His time of death?
“26 When Jesus then saw His mother, and the disciple whom He loved standing nearby, He said to His mother, ‘Woman, behold, your son!’ 27 Then He said to the disciple, ‘Behold, your mother!’ From that hour the disciple took her into his own household.” John 19:26 (NIV)
I don’t know exactly what was going through her mind during these events in her Son’s birth, ministry, and death. But I know that Mary treasured the moments of His birth for a reason. She knew He was special. She knew He was the Messiah. She knew her boy was the One that all creation had been waiting for. The angel had told her He’d be the Most High King.
”7And she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no guest room available for them.8And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night.9An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified.10But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people.11Today in the town of David a Saviorhas been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord.12This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.”13Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God…
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