Having a ‘Mary’ Kind of Christmas


Mary had no home or dwelling to decorate a tree with ornaments, tinsel, or lights. They had no hearth with a fire to warm them, yet, the sky was lit up with the brightest and biggest star ever created for the most honored king ever born. God led them to a stable when they were refused a room at the inn to rest and await their child’s birth. It had no provisions or comforts for expected guests. But, there were many visitors who came, seeking the Savior, the prophesied Messiah. Among those visiting were three kings from far off countries to honor him with gifts of gold, frankincense and myrrh. It is written that the ‘Son of God’ was wrapped in “swaddling clothes” and placed in a manger, a feeding trough used for the livestock.

There was no media standing by with cameras and microphones to announce his birth. Yet, the news was broadcast abroad by shepherds leaving their flocks and fields to see the one whom the angels foretold had come. They had no visible means of protection from the murderous king searching for the child, ordering his death. But, the little family was protected by a  host of heavenly angels.

Scripture says Mary pondered all that happened in her heart. I interpret that to mean she was a quiet, young woman who did not question why she was chosen to be the mother of the Savior of the world. She did not complain over her status in life, lack of material possessions or fret over how to be a good mother. She did not question God’s choice to choose her, or fear she would make mistakes. She did not advertise her celebrity status to the world. But, she was human. After all, she could have protested, or refused to marry Joseph, the man she was betrothed to. But, she did not. She just trusted God in all these matters because He was the most important one in her life.

Mary, a teenage young mother, was chosen to help carry out God’s master plan. She was not particularly from a select family, or clan, or a member of the hierarchy of royalty. But, she found ‘favor with God’ to birth the Savior, a virgin birth. God knew she would never boast to be the Savior’s mother, or wail in front of all at his death on the cross, or attempt to bring pity or compassion upon herself. She just continued to ‘ponder’ things in her heart long after her son’s birth, his childhood, his adult life and ultimately his death on the cross.

I have wondered too, over the things Mary dealt with as Jesus’s mother, and the strengths she had as a woman. I wonder how she coped, stayed humble, and merely ‘pondered’ things. She no doubt had a strong faith, questioning God only once as to how she could give birth to the Savior when she had never known a man, intimately. Because of her faith and trust in God she never doubted him.

I wonder if we can have such a faith at times when horrible times come, and life deals us frightening blows. God knows our pain. He weeps with us through our sorrow when chaos or crisis come. Whether it is from the loss of a child or loved one through a violent act, or loosing our home from a devastating storm, or fire, these things cannot be explained. We cannot understand them. But, it is in Him where we draw our strength. Then, maybe we can move on, beyond a crisis so that there is healing. It does not move one forward to keep asking questions like, “Why did this happen?” or “How could it have happened?” It takes the kind of faith Mary had to trust God to know what He was doing, and just ‘ponder’ his ways and will.

There have been numerous tragic events that have taken place this last year in 2012 with the most recent in Newtown, Conn.The news reports are full of sad stories with a list that just goes on. We live in perilous times. My prayers and thoughts are with all those who have suffered through these difficult times in their lives. But, there are many out there too who suffer in other ways we know nothing about because they suffer alone, privately without someone to share their pain, or seek help and support for their needs. God knows our need.  We can trust Him in all things. He is all we need when we  have nothing, or no one else.

The story of Mary and the birth of Jesus can be found in the New Testament. Matthew l:18-25, 2:1-12, and in Luke 2:1-20.


I want to thank all of my blog ‘followers’, bloggers, writers, Friday Fictioneers and readers out there for visiting my blog site this past year. I wish all a very Merry Christmas, and a safe, healthy, and happy new year in 2013.

Joyce E. Johnson (2012)

Posted December 23, 2012 by Joyce in Devotional, Essays, Faith, Illustrated story, Writing

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