Monday, December 3, 2012

Who, me?

But Mary was confused by the angel’s words and wondered what sort of greeting this might be. The angel said to her, "Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favor with God. And now, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you will name him Jesus." --Luke 1:29-31

“Who, me?” This is often the response we have when we are called out for some sort of honor or recognition. We just can’t believe we are being acknowledged. Unfortunately, this tends to be the rule rather than the exception for our entire lives for many of us.  

On some deep level we just never get hold of the idea that our spouse actually married us, that we actually have the career we have and that those around us are actually our peers, that we are the parents now instead of the children, that our money and our vote and our voice actually have power. Our feelings of insignificance permeate every area of our lives, often leading us to believe that nothing we think, say, or do really matters at all.

This is especially the case in our encounters with God. Like Mary, we tend to treat God’s presence within us with confusion and even utter disbelief. We can't understand how God can come to us, reveal himself to us, enter into a meaningful relationship with us. So, the idea that we are actually made to be one with God and to have him living in us and through us is dismissed as superstition or delusion...even by those who call themselves Christians.

While we haven’t been given the grace to birth the Messiah from our womb, we have been given the grace to bear the Spirit of the Living God within ourselves, and to birth the fruit that results from that union. “Who, me?” we ask. “I am the temple of the Living God?” We just can’t believe that the miracle has happened to us, that God makes his place with us. But, also like Mary, we have the option to respond to God’s presence with obedience. We can hear and obey God’s voice when he says, “Yes, you.”

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