Monday, December 6, 2010

The Second Sunday in Advent

Yesterday was the second Sunday in Advent. I, along with another, somewhat younger woman, were teaching the 4th/5th graders. The Scripture for our story was taken from Luke 1:28 centering around the angels appearing to Mary and Joseph with the unbelievable news that Mary would be bringing a baby boy into the world who would be called Jesus. Most amazing in this story is first Mary's acceptance of the angel's message, and Joseph's willingness to go forward with marrying Mary despite her pregnancy and all based on the angel's assurances everything would be OK.

This young woman teaching the story is an unbelievable storyteller, and she brought to the 4th/5th graders' attention that Mary was likely 13 years old and Joseph perhaps 4-5 years older. Their eyes became wide and their mouths formed "O's" with surprise. Then our storyteller asked some questions of the students. The one she asked that I thought would keep them quiet for maybe a minute or longer was, "What would your answer have been if you were Mary or Joseph?" A 10-year old girl responded with, "I guess I would have said OK because if I didn't I would be letting a lot of people down and they would be disappointed because they were patiently waiting for the Messiah."

Needless to say, we were both blown away by the maturity and thoughtfulness of this answer that came to us right out of the blue. Granted this young girl is an amazing child in her own right, intelligent, thoughtful and gifted with wonderful parents. However, the words that came forth were a surprise to both of us.

As I have pondered these words in relation to Advent, yes, we are all patiently waiting for the Messiah. And yes, I would have really been disappointed if either Mary or Joseph had refused the angel's directions. Think of life on earth without Jesus by your side, walking along with you each and every day. And yet . . . . .

There are areas in my life where patience is a difficult element to hold onto. Why is that? Is it because I love sight of Jesus walking with me, protecting me, watching over me? I've decided that in addition to working on my lack of patience with certain things, I'll also be working on keeping Jesus in focus as He and I walk through this life He's given me, this life that He died for, and this life that is so precious to Him that He takes the time to hear my fears, my concerns, and my failures.

Nothing will be impossible with God. (Luke 1:37)

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