Luke 1:46-49

Words have been the topic of much discussion in my home lately as my high school student has hit a point where they are working on essays that have a targeted number of words.  This frustrates him as he either has too many or not enough – and professes (fairly loudly) when you write you need to have the freedom to use the words that fit your topic – not just a numerical target!

This has me thinking about all the words we connect with this season – this season of Advent.  Words we may hear more in these weeks of Advent than any other time of the year – promise, preparation, wonder, joy.  I relish words that express what I believe I am feeling – in fact sometimes I use the words to avoid having to stand in the emotions of the season.  I wrap what I may be wrestling with in phrases and words that bring a level of logic to the experience.  I know this may be a way of avoiding the depth of my uncertainty, the vast array of questions that surface when I use my head to experience the mystery of Christmas, instead of my heart.

Here in Luke’s passage we encounter words attributed to Mary that project a level of confidence and faith I am not sure I fully experience this season.  Mary rejoices, celebrates, accepts her role in this story of God coming into the world.   She does so with such firm beliefs and unwavering knowledge of God’s intentional goodness in her life.   Perhaps I am a bit jealous of her assurance of God’s purposeful presence in her life.  Perhaps I can seek to stand with her to come to know God’s grace filled plan for each of us as the Holy One breaks into this broken world.   Perhaps I can lean into my heart this Advent season to fully feel the joy as we prepare to celebrate the mystery of God with us.   May we all use our hearts to prepare for the joy of Christmas morning!