So, I have some questions about the Nativity story.
After Mary heard from the angel Gabriel that she will give birth to the Son of God, who will save people from their sins, who will rule on the throne of David forever - did she try to explain all this to Joseph? How would he even understand what she would say? If she doesn’t explain it and keeps it a secret how could she handle the growing apprehension in her heart, knowing that in a few months her secret would no longer be a secret. I wonder if she was afraid of how Joseph would respond.
I wonder if she told him. If she did, would he believe her?
The more she would understand about the cosmic significance of what was going on in her body, the less she could share it with anyone with any degree of believability. How could people believe that all the Old Testament prophecies of the powerful royal kingly Messiah, the who will save Israel, has come down through all of history to her? Mary? Nazareth? Now? Here?
Of all peoples and all times, Judah was impoverished, under Roman oppression, and arguably missing typical signs of God’s blessing that had echoed through Israel’s history of years gone by. This was neither the place nor the time that anyone would expect God to usher in the Messiah – and if they did – they would certainly not expect him to come to an unknown, unwed teenager in Nazareth. So, it’s understandable that when Mary heard the angelical explanation that she was “troubled” or “agitated” at this news (Luke 1:28).
If Mary managed to read Isaiah 53 I’m sure she would have had many questions - and fears. What is a “suffering Messiah?” Could her child be that Messiah? Was not the Messiah to be a military Messiah? Where the Pharisees wrong? Would the Messiah, her child, be a Mighty King or a Suffering Servant? Why would he suffer? At whose hands would he suffer? Would he have to suffer? Any mother would wonder if there be a way around the suffering. Would his suffering extend to her and Joseph and their family?
Still, with all these questions unanswered – she says “Yes, I am the servant of the Lord, let it be to me according to your word” (Luke 1:38).
She knew that the plan she found herself in the middle of was bigger than her comfort. She understood that these were kingdom events and that her comfort took a back seat. She could see the hand of God in the middle of her unusual story.
Can you see the hand of God in the middle of your story? Even if your story has surprises, pain and disappointment? He is with you!
I trust you will have a very Merry Christmas!