Luke 1:26-28 26 And in the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent from God unto a city of Galilee, named Nazareth,27 To a virgin espoused to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David; and the virgin’s name was Mary. 28 And the angel came in unto her, and said, Hail, thou that art highly favored, the Lord is with thee: blessed art thou among women. KJV
What a surprise greeted Mary when the Angel visited her and announced that she was to become the mother of “The Son of God.” She trusted God, I wonder how we would respond?
Dear Abby recorded a powerful story. A young man from a wealthy family was about to graduate from high school. It was a custom in their affluent community for parents to give their graduating children a new car, and the boy and his dad had spent weeks visiting one dealership after another. The week before graduation they found the perfect car. The boy was certain it would be in the driveway on graduation night.
On the eve of his graduation, however, his father handed him a small package wrapped in colorful paper. The Father said the package contained the most valuable gift the Father could think of. When the boy opened it, It was a Bible! The boy was so angry he threw the Bible down and stormed out of the house. He and his father never saw each other again.
Several years later the news of the father’s death finally brought the son home. Following the funeral, he sat alone going through his father’s possessions he was to inherit. When he came the to the bible his dad had given him. He brushed away the dust and cracked it open for the first time. When he did, a cashier’s check dated the day of his high school graduation fell into his lap -in the exact amount of the car they had chosen together. The gift had been there all along . . . but he had turned away.
Perhaps the greatest surprise at Christmas is the declaration that God loves us. Do you remember the first words to Mary: “Greetings to you who are highly favored?” They may have been the most surprising words of all. They are certainly surprising words to many. God has given his gift and many are tempted to toss it aside and to walk away.
MERRY CHRISTMAS, Pastor, Carroll C. McCarroll