“And behold, your kinswoman Elizabeth in her old age has also conceived a son; and this is the sixth month with her who was called barren. For with God nothing will be impossible.” And Mary said, “Behold, I am the handmaid of the Lord; let it be to me according to your word.” And the angel departed from her. Luke 1:26-38
This week is full of miracles! Of course, God becomes one of us, the Word become flesh to dwell among us full of grace and truth. But we also hear of a woman called barren being blessed with a son, even as her kinswoman, called virgin, will give birth to a child who will be called holy, the Son of God!
Miracle is defined as “an event that is contrary to the established laws of nature and attributed to a supernatural cause; any amazing or wonderful event; a person or thing that is a marvelous example of something.”
Christmas is indeed all of those rolled into one. God become human is certainly contrary to the established laws of nature, as is a baby conceived in the womb of a virgin. Scripture attributes this to a supernatural cause—God, working through His Holy Spirit. The birth in Bethlehem is truly an amazing and wonderful event. These are miracles, undoubtedly. But the response of Mary is also a miracle, isn’t it? Visited by an angel who declares that the baby she would bear will be Son of the Most High God, Mary first questions, “How shall this be, since I have no husband?” But having been reassured that this will happen by the supernatural activity of the Holy Spirit, she simply responds, “Behold, I am the handmaid of the Lord; let it be to me according to your word.”
Mary’s response is a miracle—a marvelous example of the life of the child of God! The angel proclaims that with God, nothing will be impossible—and Mary receives that good news by faith, opening herself to God’s activity by surrendering her will to God’s: “Let it be to me according to your word.”
In this week of miracles, may we receive the good news that, with God, all things are possible! And may we respond, “Let it be to me according to your word.”
Lord, make the seemingly impossible in my life, possible—through your Holy Spirit. Amen.
Prepared by David Wendel, North American Lutheran Church