“Then Mary said, ‘Here am I, the servant of the Lord; let it be with me according to your word.’ Then the angel departed from her.
This upcoming Sunday morning we will be lighting the Advent candle that symbolizes “love”, while at the same time sharing Mary’s story in our readings.
And as I think about Mary the mother of Jesus, and this upcoming celebration, I can’t help but think about how we might understand “Advent love”.
This is the love that God shares with the world through Jesus. And this Advent love is the love that Mary experiences when she responds to the words of the angel.
This Advent love is the moment that, after hearing God’s call to Mary, Mary turns to the angel and says, “Here am I.”
Here am I
Here am I. In the midst of all the unknown, all the craziness of what Mary has just heard. She has a simple response. “Here am I, a servant of the Lord; let it be according to your word.”
And honestly, the bravery in those words strikes me this week. I think that as we get swooped up in the holiday busy-ness, we can get stuck. Of course this coming Christmas we will be celebrating the coming of our Lord, the birth of a baby in a manger for the sins of the world. Of course for many of us we know that “Jesus is the reason for the season.”
But here is Mary, experiencing a small miracle before the miracle of carrying God in her womb.
Because truthfully, this small miracle us one we might forget about. That this Advent love that we celebrate is, of course, about God’s love for us – but that there is another miracle too: Mary’s love and trust for God.
So this week as I am meditating on this idea of “Advent love”, of a love that comes to us in a baby born among animals. This love that comes to us from our God in a miracle birth. I am also meditating on Mary’s love, and how I might too here God’s words and reply, “Here am I, a servant of the Lord.”
How have you experienced God’s love? Is there something about the love during this pre-Christmas season that strikes you? Where is God calling you to love and trust God? How might you respond to God calling you in your life today?