Why was Mary afraid when the angel came to her? We depict angels as beautiful, almost LED-lit creatures, dressed in their freshest all-white robes. What’s so scary about that? I mean, if a messenger of God comes to you, shouldn’t you just be filled with faith, hope, and peace?
The angel, Gabriel, wasn’t sent by God to bring fear. He was sent to convey the favor of God. That heavenly being was there to tell Mary her purpose in life. She was to bear a son and name him, Jesus, which means “the salvation of God.”
Well, we have an advantage that Mary didn’t; we know why the angel was there and what was going to happen. It’s a little different though when we have to face the unexpected or the unknown in our own lives.
I remember as I prepared to graduate from college, my heart was filled with fear and doubt. I had applied to countless banking jobs, but it seemed that my shiny new Economics degree wasn’t opening up doors as I had anticipated. I asked God for help, but worried if he would come through. Then a friend’s father asked me a question: “What do you want to do when you graduate?” I shared with him my desire to be a banker, and as he walked out of the room, he casually said, “You’ll get a call when you graduate.” Sure enough, two days after graduation, I got a call with the job offer that started my season in banking. God got his message across, reassuring me that he had everything in control. And later, he would do it again when I knew he wanted me to go into ministry.
When God shows up in our lives, we must push through our feelings of fear, doubt, and insecurity and trust him. Focus on what he is calling you to do. He’ll provide what you need, when you need it. This Christmas season, let’s pray to see God’s call to us as a gift filled with favor, purpose, and peace.