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Today’s post continues with our theme of Mary—I love how God can weave His own theme together without letting any of us know. He’s pretty cool, like that.
I’m so excited to have Anna Kate Prum today sharing with us. She’s guest posted for us before and I can’t tell you how much I love her—her insights, perspective, and compassion are rich and they minister to me and encourage me deeply. Here’s Anna Kate!!
I’ve been thinking some about Mary this Advent season and her strength, shown in surrender and peace, that the Bible story portrays. Really, I’m sure she was quite overwhelmed, confused, embarrassed, and even sad. But God came to her (albeit in a crazy way). And then she was the vessel for Emmanuel, God with us.
I’m often caught up in the guilt of not being quite spiritual enough, not doing quite enough to really know God and get what He is doing in the world. The Advent season is a much-needed reminder that God comes to us. Emmanuel, God with us.
When we experience [God’s] love we turn away from the notion that we initiate and God responds; that we, by our religious efforts, can set something in motion that God must obey in response. To believe that by an effort of will we can mount nearer to God or add one cubit to our stature is as unchristian as the belief that we have no task as Christians for the mundane affairs of this world. Both beliefs have the same root – the pride that seeks to climb its way to God – and produces the same kind of confusion as the ancient attempt to build the tower of Babel…Although we are tempted to exert ourselves and push ourselves forward in our search for God, the desire to climb nearer to God is nothing but egotistical satisfaction and self-aggrandizement. The way that Christ took was the low way. His way is abandonment. He not only descended from the presence of God, but he came as a baby in the poorest conditions. It is not that we, as pilgrims, climb to a celestial city, but that the Christ child is born in the poverty of our hearts.
From Watch for the Light: Readings for Advent and Christmas
Hear more from Anna Kate and her sister Sarah Beth at IdaClare