Mary experienced powerful emotions during her personal Advent, waiting for the birth of her son Jesus. Those emotions ebbed and flowed, not necessarily following any logical order but weaving back and forth to create a beautiful fabric of their own.
In my job with Bethany Christian Services, I work with birthmoms who are making an adoption plan. Their decision to trust another family to care for their child is never easy. The birthmoms become attached to the child who has resided within their body for nine long months.
Today, for example, I participated in a placement ceremony for a two-week old baby. There were many tears. The adoptive parents wept with joy as they received a beautiful baby to raise as their own. At the same time, the birthmother cried as she handed her child into the care of the adoptive mother. Knowing she was making the best choice for her child given her own difficult circumstances did not make the action any easier for the birthmom. Her decision to go ahead with the adoption plan was an voluble expression of her enormous love for her child, her desire that her child have opportunities that she the birth mom could not provide.
Mary too became attached to the child within her womb. With each passing day, she felt increasing…love.
Before Jesus was even born, Mary loved Him. Before she ever saw his face or changed a single diaper, her heart overflowed with a desire to care for Him, to nurture Him.
Romans 5:8 tells us that “God showed His great love for us by sending Christ to die for us while we were still sinners.” Just as the child within the womb of a mother has done nothing to earn her favor, you and I did nothing to win God’s affection. As Mary fell in love with Jesus long before His birth, God too loved you and me long before we turned to Him.
You and I have not yet seen God the Father face to face, but one day each of us will. How can we, not having seen Him, demonstrate our love for Him today?