At this time of year it's easier to read the Christmas story with a bit more intention, seeking to find new and previously undiscovered truths. And much to my amusement, the other day on K-LOVE they were talking about the questions we would ask Mary given a chance. I had to laugh because I thought a lot about that this week. Made me want to call and mention my cravings and labor pain ponderings.
However, there is a lesson we can learn from Mary that we can put into practice and were actually called to put into practice from Moses. In Deuteronomy 4:9 Moses says ~ Only be careful, watch yourselves closely so that you do not forget the things your eyes have seen or let them fade from your heart as long as you live. (emphasis mine)
Did Mary know this? I think so. Why? Luke 2:19 But Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart.
My question is do we do this? I mean really do this. My fear is that the answer is no. Maybe not always, 100% of the time no, but enough of the time that it matters.
As Christians, we know that two things we are supposed to do are read our Bibles and pray. But if all we are doing is reading our Bibles and praying, are we making the time and space God needs to show us what He wants us to know or are we on a time limit to get to the next thing on our checklist?
I'm not talking about spending uninterrupted hours lavishly pouring over God's Word (that would be lovely though). I'm talking about reading and stopping reading when we get to something that we know God is trying to tell us and spending some time on it rather than finishing our assigned reading for the day. Don't get me wrong, I am all for a good reading plan, but I am also realizing that we have to be flexible with the timeframe. We can't be afraid of getting behind at the cost of missing what God would like us to treasure up and ponder in our hearts.
In Unseen, Sara Hagerty writes, "I had approached parts of God's Word as if they were merely platitudes and rules for clean living." (p.147) Let me tell you first hand, platitudes and rules for clean living do not give unrestricted access for God to change our hearts. All they do is hope to adjust our behavior temporarily.
But what if we did what Mary did? What if we took all the wonder of the things God is showing us and actually took our time with them. Re-read that one verse again and again and again knowing that God is trying to tell us something. What if we actually opened our Bibles with the knowledge that while everything has a contextual meaning, it really is the living breathing Word of God and that these promises are for us in our current context? No, we can't take I can do all things and take it to believe that we can go out and run a marathon tomorrow without any training or even having walked half a mile; but, if we have been training for months or are thinking of doing one next year and the enemy is working us over telling us we are going to fail and that our fundraising efforts to run it to bring awareness are in vain, you can sure as shoot bet that God can use I can do all things to get you past the enemies taunts.
Mary knew that what the shepherds were recounting to her and others about what the angel had told them was important. She knew that she had to take these words and put them someplace for safekeeping. Let's use this season of waiting to purposefully slow down and treasure up all that God's Word is revealing to us, heed the words of Moses, and follow Mary's example to never let them fade from our hearts as long as we live.
Mary Did You Know