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Ok, I want to pause here and talk about this.
The first think I want us to see in this passage is that
Faith Accepts Altered Expectations
Just like many of us, Mary had some expectations of what her future was going to be looking like.
She was young, probably in her early teens, and she was pledged to be married.
I don’t doubt that even though this was probably an arranged marriage, that she had some expectations of the wedding and of life after the wedding.
And then and angel visits her and alters her expectations for what life is going to be like.
Being a young teenage girl betrothed to be married you are supposed to be a virgin.
In fact, sex outside of marriage is a crime punishable by being stoned to death.
Your pregnancy through the Holy Spirit is going to be no easy manner of explanation.
Will they want to stone you?
If things go well, maybe Joseph will only divorce you.
This will bring public disgrace upon your family as well.
Your friends will probably turn from you
Life as you know it and expect it to go is forever altered by this news.
How would you respond?
How would you respond to your expectations for life being totally and completely changed and in a way that might bring hardship and suffering, at least for the near term?
Would you try to talk God out of it?
Would you try to talk to Him and let Him know the whole situation that, from your standpoint, He is obviously unaware of?
“Um, Lord? This plan you have, the one with me bearing Your Child. Um, did you know that I am a virgin? This is going to be hard to explain.
Would you discuss some other options that you think would be a better plan for God?
“You know, I think you might want to consider using someone else, someone not a virgin so this child could have a better chance in life.”
It seems foolish knowing what we know now doesn’t it?
But don’t we do this when God alters our plans?
We get the call from the doctor and we find out we have cancer.
We go into work and find out that we have been laid off.
We are just running to the store and someone runs into our car, and they are uninsured.
“God, what are you doing?!” “Do you need some help with planning?” I have plans already and they don’t include this!”
How does Mary respond to these altered expectations?
These are some of the most profound words in all of Scripture when we truly consider what is going on with Mary.
She says, “I am the Lord’s servant… May it be to me as you have said.” (Luke 1:38)
Are you kidding me? What kind of faith is this?
This is a faith that accepts altered expectations because she knows the God who is in control intimately. She knows that even if she doesn’t understand all of the situation, God does and God is good. Her expectations for her life are nothing compared to what God has planned for our eternity.
Paul writes to the Romans in
Romans 8:18 - I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us. (NIV)
Faith Accepts altered expectations trusting that the Lord is good all the time.
But this is the kind of faith that not only accepts altered expectations but this is a
Faith that Believes without Seeing
Faith Believes without Seeing
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