Gospel Luke 1:26–38
In the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent by God to a town in Galilee called Nazareth, to a virgin engaged to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David. The virgin’s name was Mary. And he came to her and said, “Greetings, favored one! The Lord is with you.” But she was much perplexed by his words and pondered what sort of greeting this might be. The angel said to her, “Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favor with God. And now, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you will name him Jesus. He will be great, and will be called the Son of the Most High, and the Lord God will give to him the throne of his ancestor David. He will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and of his kingdom there will be no end.” Mary said to the angel, “How can this be, since I am a virgin?” The angel said to her, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you; therefore the child to be born will be holy; he will be called Son of God. And now, your relative Elizabeth in her old age has also conceived a son; and this is the sixth month for her who was said to be barren. For nothing will be impossible with God.” 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.
I can’t think of a better way to say it. If you are unfamiliar with “OMG”, in the world of texting, tweeting, emailing, facebooking, and even contemporary speaking it means “Oh my God!”. If there were anything deserving an OMG, this passage from Luke qualifies. The girl Mary is told that she will be the mother of the Lord of lords and King of kings. With that news, I’m pretty sure that Mary didn’t jump to contemplating all the implications of the incarnation. Her life went from the ordinary to the extreme of out-of-ordinary. The pattern of life she had previously envisioned for herself suddenly shifted. She now would know uncertainties, joys, and pains beyond the usual. Yet, to some degree her life continued on. She wasn’t magically transported to some palace. The child she would bear would need feeding, clothing, changing, holding, kissing, teaching. On one hand, everything stayed the same. That is the message and power of God’s incarnation. In that it doesn’t somehow rise out of and away from the everyday stuff of life. Instead the Divine One dives right into real life, Mary’s life, my life, and your life. There’s probably no better way to say and share the message of Advent of God’s coming than, OMG.
OLOG – O Lord Our God, we give thanks for your profound love. We give thanks that you sent Jesus to be born of the woman Mary, into a family. We give thanks that Mary is like us a person with fears, hopes, joys, pains. Open our hearts, that your gift of Love will be continually born in our very ordinary lives.
Suggested Action – Look for ways in your ordinary days to share the good news of God’s presence in our world. How can you “translate” this message in your life? What words will you use? What will you do to call those around you out of fear and into faith in the God for whom nothing is impossible? Share these ideas, attempts, etc. with your church.