What Mary Didn’t Do …

by Kari on December 19, 2012

Do you remember being 13? I remember experiencing a common teen-girl behavior: freaking out. I believe all teen girls do this often — triggered by any variety of things  ranging from a zit to a stolen boyfriend.  Chalk it up tor hormones or whatever you like, but freaking out is the norm at 13. (Or 30 for some … but that’s another issue.)

Not for Mary. If anyone had cause to freak out it was her. She is nine months pregnant with the Son of God, still enduring ridicule from all sides, but probably holed up her in her home nesting like crazy, getting the nursery ready and having everything prepared. We who have had babies know that crazy-nesting period when we can’t shampoo the carpets enough times and can’t make enough gallons of soup to freeze before baby’s arrival. We’re nuts, all of us.

But just as she’s about to bring baby boy into the world, all the plans change:

Road trip. 

And not just any road trip: a donkey-riding roadtrip of almost 100 miles. Oh for the love! Can you imagine? I could hardly walk up the stairs at 9 months pregnant, and this little waif of a thing was trotting across Israel about ready to burst. This girl is amazing.

But that’s not it. Sure, she’s thinking, surely there will be a nice hotel waiting for us when we get there. One of those special doula birthing suites with a Jacuzzi tub. Nope. No room.

How about a barn? 

I’m sorry, ladies, but can you stinkin’ imagine this??!! We think that the childbirth nightmare is not making it to the hospital in time and giving birth in the car. No … this is the childbirth nightmare. leaning against a hay bale while pushing out your baby, then lying him in a feed trough for his first night of sleep. Good grief.

This was God’s plan. Would Mary freak out?

No. She was calm, cool, and collected. No epidural. No Jacuzzi tub. No nothing. Every plan changed. Nothing was as she expected. There may have been tears, I can only  imagine she was humanly hormonal, but her cries weren’t loud enough to make it onto the page.

She must have wept quietly. She must have talked to herself instead of listening to herself. Must have chosen to submit her emotions to the rule of Christ — who she held in her arms.

She was the first to bow the knee. The first to submit to His plan. And the result was a calm, cool, collected first-time mother who cradled the glory of God in her very arms. Why? She knew her God.When all is out of control, nothing is out of His control.

Do we remember this when all is spinning out of control? Nothing is out of His control. 

:: Mary kept confidence.  Besides freaking out, the other behavior commonly known to teen girls is called “blabbermouth syndrome.”  Yes, that is, there is no gate on that beautiful mouth and so everything comes out. Again, some girls never outgrow this … but that’s another topic.

While Mary was entrusted with the Savior, she was also entrusted with a Secret. As God gradually revealed the magnificent truth about this God-child, she was given a first-hand glimpse of the miraculous Rescue Mission her very Son would spearhead.

Would she tweet it? Blog about it? Put it all over Facebook?

Could she be entrusted to keep quiet? To hold the truth in confidence, knowing that God would unfold His plan at the appropriate time? She did. When the shepherds shared with Mary the amazing news that had been told them by the heavenly host, what did she do?

“But Mary treasured up all these things, pondering them in her heart.” (2:19)

Where did she treasure them and ponder them? In the quiet of her own heart. And then, as Jesus grew and revealed in His own words more about His mission, that He must be in His father’s house, once again,

“she treasured up all these things in her heart” (2:51)

God’s glorious gospel-plan depended on the discretion of a teenage girl. It wasn’t time to blab about her boy.

Mary wasn’t called to be a prophet, just a mom.

Would she quietly be faithful to her task? She was. And in God’s beautiful time, the Rescue Mission unfolded, the glorious love story of a Groom seeking a Bride.

Here’s the cool thing for us: We will never be called on to give birth to the Son of God (that seat’s taken!) but we will all be called on for some mission of God. We each have a unique calling on our lives. Will we follow through? Is God’s glory safe with us? 

Will we be courageous when everything is scary? Will we stand in confidence with our future looks unsure. Will we stay calm, cool, and collected even when everything’s spinning out of control? And will we keep confidence, showing discretion at the appropriate times. The qualities that Mary needed for her mission are the same qualities we need for whatever mission God has for us.

And He does have a mission for us. He has good works, prepared in advance for us (Eph 2:10). How will we respond?  I’m grateful for a girl named Mary who quietly, simply, humbly submitted her will to God’s and let Him write her into His story. I pray the same for us…

{Revisiting this from last year … bless you as you prepare for His birth!  Thanks for reading.}