You’ve likely noticed that the holiday season seems to get stranger as we get older. I remember counting down the days as a child, making wish lists in October, and begging to go to the mall for a steaming hot chocolate and a glimpse at Santa. These days, I seem to look up and notice I’m halfway through December. (This realization is directly followed by me frantically looking for gifts I can Amazon Prime to my house within 2 days). I still love Christmas, but recently, I’ve been searching for its magic again.
In my quest to regain a sense of Christmas, I have found myself drawn back toward Mary this year. I’ve wondered what God’s process was to choose the woman he would share a son with. What an honor—what a terror that would be. The weight of the privilege and responsibility is almost unthinkable. And yet, God plants a dream within each of us in His Kingdom, asking us to bring it to life. As I find my God-dreams, I have begun to ask how, just like Mary, I can partner with Him to bring a gift to this world. He chooses to trust each of us to birth His plans; to partner with Him to bring heaven to earth.
“The angel replied, ‘The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you. So the baby to be born will be holy…’” Luke 1:35
The gift God places in us is not by our might, nor by our qualifications. It is by His presence. The presence of the Holy Spirit brings something so powerful that it overshadows us completely. The heavenly gifts we carry come from God, and what we do with them is a gift back to Him. The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and His power will overshadow you… if you choose to let Him.
And therein lies the majesty of Mary. Though God could have visited countless other women, he chose the one that said, “May it be so.” Not the one who was married, or the one who already knew how to raise a child, or the one with a royal bloodline. He chose the one who wanted whatever He wanted. That’s a heart that can be trusted with a miracle. To be someone who partners with God, we have to be willing to completely surrender. That is the only qualification God considers. To bring something holy into this world, we have to simply say yes.
Too often, we let our view of ourselves stop what God wants to do in and through us. Throughout the Bible, angels appear to reveal God’s plans and call people into their destiny. Almost every time, the person begins to list all the reasons they are unqualified—as if God didn’t know before He called them. It seems as if our automatic reaction to God’s hand on our life is to create an elaborate excuse about how unworthy we are. We forget that miracles happen when “the power of the Most High overshadows us,” not when we find ourselves perfectly ready. The Holy Spirit is willing and able… if only we would be too.
“Mary responded, ‘I am the Lord’s servant. May everything you have said about me come true.’ And then the angel left her.” Luke 1:38
All the angel was waiting for was a yes. Nothing more, nothing less. The consistent, scary, beautiful yes is all that God needs to bring a miracle into this world through you. Today in 2017, you carry the Spirit of God in you, like Mary did. Though your assignment may be different, your purpose is the same: to bring Jesus into this world. You, too, can carry a miracle. May this be your Mary Christmas.