Exactly nine months from now, we celebrate Christmas! Let me be the first to wish you Merry Christmas 2011! So, what would happen nine months before the birth of Christ? Mary finds out she is with child. Today we celebrate the Feast of the Annunciation. In the first reading we see that famous prophecy from Isaiah 7…”the virgin shall be with child, and bear a son, and shall call him Emmanuel, which means ‘God is with us!’ ” Then in the second reading from Hebrews, we hear it recounted that Christ said, “Behold, I come to do your will.”
The Gospel reading today is, of course, the story of the Annunciation. The Angel Gabriel comes to Mary and tells her that she will give birth to the Son of God. And Mary gives her great fiat, “Behold, I am the handmaid of the Lord. May it be done to me according to your word.” What a frightening time this must have been for the young virgin. Imagine the sense of unknowing. How will I handle this? What will the neighbors think? And yet we see no hesitation on Mary’s part.
We must always remember that Mary had free will. She could have refused to cooperate. She could have asked that the angel find someone else…someone older, someone more capable, someone more qualified for the job of raising God’s only Son. But she didn’t. She said yes. She said YES!! Do you think that all of heaven was waiting on pins and needles for Mary’s answer? You, too, will be faced with decisions this very day that will allow you to say yes to God. In fact, God will ask you to bear His Son to the world today. All of heaven is waiting for your answer. Will you say yes?
Father, you ask us each day to be bearers of your Son to the world. Give us the grace to imitate the Blessed Virgin Mary and say yes. YES!! Amen.