And Mary said, “My soul exalts the Lord, and my spirit has begun to rejoice in God my Savior, because he has looked upon the humble state of his servant. For from now on all generations will call me blessed, because he who is mighty has done great things for me, and holy is his name”
– Luke 1:46-48
I can’t even begin to imagine encountering an angel from Heaven who had an audible word specifically for me, let alone being told that I would give birth to Jesus Christ, the Savior of the world. What an incredibly overwhelming and holy moment.
What I can comprehend, and have become familiar with, is unexpected changes to my life plans and what I thought my life would look like. I’m sure Mary thought about having children AFTER getting married to Joseph, but God had other plans. Better plans. The way Mary responded to this holy encounter and this radical disruption to her plans should be an inspiration to us all. Her response? It wasn’t doubt, but a faithful trust in God’s word.
Mary accepted what the angel presented to her. In her own words, she replied, “Yes, I am a servant of the Lord; let this happen to me according to your word” (Luke 1:38). What we see in this scripture is that the Word of God was an anchor to Mary. She knew Him, and her response was evidence of that.
What is even more profound is that she then worshiped. She sang a song to the Lord!
She worshiped out of a full heart, gratitude, and awe of her God. She worshiped as a pregnant, unmarried woman, which was a culturally dangerous position for her to be in. She rejoiced with exuberance- a lively and energetic spirit. Out of a grateful and thankful heart, worship and praise naturally flowed. What a beautiful example Mary has given us, not because life was perfect and comfortable, but because she trusted the ways of the Lord.
Worship Him First
One area in my life that I am really committed to growing in is my response to disruption or a change of plans. My first reaction to an unexpected job layoff last year was fear and feeling abandoned. It made no sense, and the timing couldn’t have been worse. I realized I had a limited understanding of what the Lord was rearranging in my life. Endings are a necessary part of life, but why are we so quick to assume that all endings are negative?
This radical disruption became the biggest blessing that I now thank the Lord for daily. He uprooted me to be able to plant me somewhere better. He set me in a place that would no longer keep me small, but allowed me to grow and expand! He removed me from one circle and sat me at a table where I pray I can continue to be seated at. What I thought was a loss was actually a gain, an upgrade!
I want to be quick to trust when change comes my way. I want my first response to be praise and worship, even when life feels out of control and unpredictable. The trials I have walked through have never once taken me out, but brought me closer to the Kingdom and desperate for more of His presence. Difficulties and disappointments in life aren’t the failure of the Lord’s plans and purposes. They are opportunities to become battle tested, while experiencing what only God can do, which is provide, protect, rescue, and so much more.
When we allow the Lord to radically disrupt our comfort and plans, our first response should not be worry, but worship. We can glorify the Lord even when life seems confusing. God doesn’t desire certain actions or robotic responses, rather He desires our hearts. He desires a thankfulness in all circumstances where we can trust Him through the unknowns and in our worship.
Our faith isn’t anchored by what we see, but what we hear in the Word of God (Hebrews 11). What God calls us to, He will fulfill. Every little step of faith leads to the next bigger step of faith.
The Lord has done great things for us, and He’s still writing our story.
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