• Mount Tabor UMC

Devotional for December 19

For as long as I can remember, I have always loved the Christmas season. The decorations, the lights, the sounds – to this day, even the slightest mention of Christmas instantly brings a smile to my face. Why? To me, Christmas is the ultimate season of love. It is an opportunity to spend time with family and loved ones. A time to spread joy to all those around.

While I appreciate all aspects of the holiday season, I especially love listening to Christmas music. Therefore, as I sit and reflect about what Christmas meant to Mary, I can’t help but think about the classic Christmas song Mary, Did You Know? Some listeners, myself included, might try to imagine Mary’s response to the questions presented throughout the song. Questions like Mary, did you know that your baby boy is Lord of all creation? Thankfully, Luke 1 26-38 helps us answer these questions. The angel Gabriel came to Mary and announced she would conceive and give birth to a son. He would be called the Son of the Most High, and the Lord God would give him the throne of his father David (v.32). After receiving the shocking news, Mary reacts much like so many of us when we receive unexpected news. Mary asked “How could this be?” (v 34) The initial shock and disbelief led her to question God’s plan for her. Fortunately, Mary ultimately placed her full trust in the impossible from God with her response “I am the Lord’s servant. May it be done to me according to your word” (v. 38)

So what does Christmas mean to me? Yes, it is a time to be with family. It is a time to find joy in the small things like decorating the Christmas tree and listening to carols. But most of all, for me, Christmas is a time to remember, and be encouraged by, what Gabriel told Mary during her time of significant doubt: “Nothing is impossible with God” (v. 37). It is a reminder that God is using us to do His good work every single day. Mary initially questioned God’s plan for her but upon further reflection, placed her full trust in the impossible from God. What would it look like if I did the same? What might I say “yes” to that could change my life, and that of those around me, forever?

Lord, help me to remember that nothing is impossible with you. Just because it’s Christmas doesn’t mean the problems of this historic year have gone away. Give me a heart of faith to believe in your ability to do great things through everyday people like me. Amen

Written by Nicole Dutton