“In the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent from God to a city of Galilee named Nazareth, to a virgin betrothed to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David. And the virgin’s name was Mary. And he came to her and said, “Greetings, O favored one, the Lord is with you!” But she was greatly troubled at the saying, and tried to discern what sort of greeting this might be. And the angel said to her, “Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favor with God. And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you shall call his name 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 father David, and he will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and of his kingdom there will be no end.” And Mary said to the angel, “How will this be, since I am a virgin?””
Luke 1:26-34 ESV
The angel came to Mary with a greeting but the “greeting” troubled her. Have you ever had to consider how the Lord is greeting you? We usually greet one another with a “hello, how are you”? Or “nice to meet you”. But in this case Mary is bothered by what she’s hearing.
It’s easy to understand on one hand why she would be bothered; an angel is speaking to her. However, maybe something else is happening here? Perhaps she’s not feeling very “highly favored”? These are not words that she would use to describe herself and yet it’s how God views her.
How often to do we look at ourselves differently than God does? I’m confident that God has a completely different view of me than I do of myself. I’m not talking about walking around high and mighty but I am saying that many of us, like Mary do not readily see ourselves as part of God’s bigger design and plan.
God has a plan and purpose for each of us. He has orchestrated events and circumstances to get us right where we are for a specific reason. In Mary’s case, she would have never seen this coming, not in her lifetime, nor a million lifetimes! And yet, here it is happening to her: God choosing her for a very special task.
This holiday season, don’t miss how God is trying to greet you in a special way. Maybe He’s using someone unique as a messenger in your life to remind you that you are “highly favored”? Take some time and consider the words that God is trying so hard to convince you about: that He loves you, He has chosen you for a special task, He has sent His son for you, He wants to use you to deliver His son to others, He has called you to do something only you can do.