“Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favor with God.”Luke 1:30
This second week of Advent, yet again our faith is put to the test as we hear the angel Gabriel tell Mary “do not be afraid”. Fear is a natural human reaction that God has given us for survival as needed. If I come across an angry bear, fear kicks in to warn me that I need to do something to escape his presence for my own survival. Outside of survival instincts, fear can be a result of lacking trust in God and His plans for you, His people, His nation.
Could you imagine that day centuries ago when Gabriel appeared to Mary and out of fear, instead of saying yes, she declined God’s invitation to be the mother of Jesus? I’m certain she had some level of fear, fear of seeing an angel before her, fear of being so young and being disowned by her family because she was with child and wasn’t married. Ultimately, she surrendered that fear through the grace of her faith.
Isn’t that what we are also being invited to do this week as we embrace this season of preparation. To surrender ourselves in faith in all that God has planned before us. To fear not, because the Lord is truly with us.
Whether you are afraid of what may happen to our country because of the political results, afraid of your health and the health of your friends and family during this pandemic, afraid of losing your job and not being able to financially support your family, remember that God is still inviting you to surrender these fears and have faith that He will deliver a savior to you, just as He did centuries ago to a young woman.
I invite you to ponder the verses from Ephesians 1:11-12 and envision yourself chosen, just as Mary was chosen, for His purpose. To love and be loved.
“In him we were also chosen, destined in accord with the purpose of the One who accomplishes all things according to the intention of his will, so that we might exist for the praise of his glory, we who first hoped in Christ.”Ephesians 1:11-12