Good Questions

But the angel said to her, “Do not be afraid, Mary, you have found favor with God. You will be with child and give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus. He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. The Lord God will give him the throne of his father David, and he will reign over the house of Jacob forever; his kingdom will never end.” “How will this be,” Mary asked the angel, “since I am a virgin?” The angel answered, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you. So the holy one to be born will be called the Son of God. Even Elizabeth your relative is going to have a child in her old age, and she who was said to be barren is in her sixth month. For nothing is impossible with God.” “I am the Lord’s servant,” Mary answered. “May it be to me as you have said.” Then the angel left her.” Luke 1:30-38

“How will this be?” Mary asks a great question but not out of unbelief, out of normal curiosity. She’s a young virgin. Can you blame her for blurting out the obvious? I would have asked the same thing. But notice her question is, “How will this be?” not, “Can this be?” She’s not questioning the character or ability of her God, she’s just reflecting upon what she doesn’t understand.

The problem with our questioning is not that we are asking hard questions, but that we are not asking them in the right way. We ask from places of unbelief. We use “Can” and not “How”. But perhaps most disturbing is that our questioning doesn’t lead anywhere. We don’t follow up with assertions. We remain in that place of questioning.

Mary follows up her question with a declaration, “I am the Lord’s servant. May it be to me as you have said.”

Everyone questions. Raising questions to the Lord can be a form of worship, if they are raised with humble hearts, hearts that confess, “I am the Lord’s servant.” What we learn from Mary is how to step over the confusion, what we don’t understand, and rest in truth, what we do understand. Mary might not know the whole salvation plan of God, but she does know her place as a servant of the Most High. Her simple, meek response is spoken into the unknown of her circumstances. That’s a beautiful picture of faith.

Is there a realm of confusion in your life right now that has you swimming in questions? Ask the questions, but don’t stop there. Make your declaration.

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