When was the last time you were visited by an angel? What was your initial reaction? Did the encounter require an action? Today is the Solemnity of the Annuciation, the event celebrating Gabriel’s visit to Mary who tells her she will conceive a son. This is not just any ordinary baby though. She will bear the Son of God, Gabriel informs her.
Her reaction is beyond remarkable: “Behold, I am the handmaid of the Lord. May it be done to me according to your word.” How many of us can respond with such freedom to a request that we have no idea of how it will unfold? Mary had no idea what her yes would really mean. Perhaps she imagined her son would become an earthly king or a ruler of great esteem. Chances are when she said yes, she had no concept of the cost that would be asked of her.
We never know what our yes will bring. Every yes and every no has its consequence. Each moment of life we are called to bear Christ or to serve the One in front of us. Do we walk away from the panhandler? Do we postpone a visit with a friend once again? Should we quit the job that causes us stress? Will marrying that person solve all our problems? Is a third chance the right way to respond to someone who has hurt you badly already?
I look at the road I am on and I have no idea what my yes will bring. This has not been a choice in some ways. At this point, I cannot not walk through the medical maze. My “may it be done to me” is much different than Mary’s. Courage and faith are still elements in my moving forward. Mary has been a model this Lent. I have to trust that this is according to God’s will and that it will be used for the glory of God. My yes remains. As with Mary, I am curious how it will unfold but somehow I am at peace most days.
This Lent, what challenge have you had to say yes to? Who has been a mentor to you?