Today’s and next week’s topic is an important one, especially for the Christmas story.
To understand, we have to read Luke 1: 26-38
Here, we find the angel Gabriel greeting Mary. But before he even tells her that she is going to be the mother of Jesus, he tells her:
“Good morning! You’re beautiful with God’s beauty, Beautiful inside and out! God be with you.” -Luke 1:28 MSG.
Wow, compliments from God’s messenger? This is affirmation- to state or assert positively, the assertion that something exists or is true.
You’d think that Mary would be excited, right?
Oh no. She was absolutely TERRIFIED by this news, or should we say, the angel.
Now, before we start pointing our fingers at Mary, we have to remember that angels are not humans. They are also not little cute babies with wings. They’re huge, powerful creatures with a dazzling glow.
You can see how she’s terrified right?
But, while us humans might react to Mary’s distress as unreasonable, or even insulting, the angel doesn’t. Instead, he tells her:
“Mary, you have nothing to fear. God has a surprise for you:” Luke 1 :30 MSG.
Affirmation is important, especially in this world where people try to tell us who we should be. It helps shape our self image of who we are and how we deal with other people around us.
Mary was a young woman, who probably might have been given some negative comments. But God saw that she was a dedicated woman who loved Him, and was humble and obedient to His will. That’s why He chose her to be Jesus’ mother.
So if she was what God was looking for, why did the angel affirm her?
Because she didn’t show that she was beautiful inside and out. She didn’t know how proud God was with her. No one had told her. So to be told by an angel of all creatures is a big deal.
So, how can we be affirmed by God? By reading His Scriptures. There are so many loving pieces of affirmation hidden in the Bible, just waiting to be read and shared.
We can’t do God’s work if we don’t know who we are and how precious we are in His sight.
Here’s a challenge:
Write ten things that you like about someone else and find five Bible verses to remind them of how lovely they are. Then, do the same thing for yourself.
How did you find it?
Was it easy, or was it hard?
Next week, we will be talking about Expectations.