By: Mary Fairchild
Mary was a young girl, probably only about 12 or 13 years old when the angel Gabriel came to her. She had recently become engaged to a carpenter named Joseph. Mary was an ordinary Jewish girl, looking forward to marriage. Suddenly her life would forever be changed.
Mary was fearful and troubled in the presence of the angel. She could never have expected to hear the most incredible news — that she would have a child, and her son would be the Messiah. Although she could not comprehend how she would conceive the Savior, she responded to God with belief and obedience.
Although Mary’s life held great honor, her calling would demand great suffering as well. Just as there is pain in childbirth and motherhood, there would be much pain in the privilege of being the mother of the Messiah. Mary was the mother of the Messiah, Jesus Christ, the Savior of the world. She was a willing servant. She trusted God and she obeyed his call.
The angel told Mary in Luke 1:28 that she was highly favored by God. This phrase simply meant that Mary had been given much grace or “unmerited favor” from God. Even with God’s favor, Mary would still suffer much. Though she would one day be highly honored as the mother of the Savior, she would first know disgrace as an unwed mother. She would nearly lose her fiance’. Her beloved son would be rejected and cruelly murdered. Mary’s submission to God’s plan would cost her dearly, yet she was willing to be God’s servant.
God knew that Mary was a woman of rare strength and obedience. She was the only human being to be with Jesus throughout his entire life — from his birth until his death. She gave birth to him as her baby and watched him die as her Savior. Mary also knew the Scriptures. When the angel appeared and told her the baby would be God’s Son, Mary replied, “I am the Lord’s servant … may it be to me as you have said.” (Luke 1:38). She knew of the Old Testament prophesies about the coming Messiah.
Mary was young, poor and female. These qualities made her unsuitable in the eyes of her people to be used mightily of God. However, God looked upon the quality of her trust and obedience. He knew she would willingly serve God in one of the most important callings ever given to a human being. Just like Mary, God looks at our obedience and trust–usually not the qualifications that man might look upon. God will often choose and use the most unlikely of choices.
Mary must have known that her submission to God’s plan would cost her. If nothing else, she knew she would be disgraced as an unwed mother. She must have thought that Joseph would divorce her, or worse yet, he might even have her put to death by stoning. Mary may not have considered the full extent of her future suffering. She may not have imagined the pain of watching her beloved child bear the weight of sin and die a terrible death on the cross. Still, she willingly submitted to God’s plan. Can we willingly accept God’s plan? Can we even rejoice in God’s plan, like Mary did, when we know that it will cost us dearly?
Mary Fairchild has worked full-time in Christian ministry since 1988 serving in several capacities, including missionary, assistant to the pastoral staff, administrative assistant and office manager for a large church. Since 2005, Mary has authored numerous articles on biblical topics and edited several Christian books.
Mary, Mother of Jesus
By: Denis Martindale
A girl beyond compare…
Her name was Mary, Joseph’s love,
Betrothed, untouched by Man…
Who met an angel from above
Who then revealed God’s plan!
‘Young maiden, you are full of grace!
The Lord chose you of all!
You shall conceive and then embrace
The child that God must call!
He shall be king and rightly so,
Begotten of the Lord!
And blessed is he, God’s Son to know…
So, Mary, be assured! ‘
God’s Son was born as prophesied!
To Mary, here on Earth…
In time, she saw Him crucified!
Esteemed not for His worth!
Her heart was broken just like His!
She held his mortal frame!
And ‘neath her tears, a final kiss
As she whispered His name…
Her heart was numbed just like her soul…
With trembling hands she prayed…
Although she knew God kept control,
Her spirit was dismayed!
With trembling lips she sought His peace,
Like none on Earth before
In hopes her faith would thus release
A miracle and more!
When Jesus left His tomb of death,
The sun was rising, too…
The Saviour savoured God’s new breath
And knew what He must do…
‘With God, all things are possible!
Forgiveness, born of faith…
Such is the Gospel preached by Paul
To those whom God would save!