Graced from the Beginning
Read: LUKE 1:26-38
The story of the angel telling Mary that “the Son of the Most High” will be born through her is so familiar that I’m often tempted to gloss over it and get right to Christmas, to the shepherds and all heaven rejoicing. But something new struck me this time: the angel called Mary “favored one.” On the surface, this makes it sound like God chose Mary because she deserved it, because she was a good person, a model citizen. But no! The word translated as “favor” actually means “grace.” Grace means unmerited favor—favor that is undeserved and can’t be earned.
In my inner world of meritocracy, this can be a tough concept to understand. I want to earn my place and prove that I’m worthy. But God has other plans! Immanuel, “God with us,” reminds us how God reveals God’s self in us—with grace.
Master, help me embrace your grace in every breath, thought, action, and moment you have graced to me. AMEN.