Daily D – Luke 1:28
Gabriel appeared to her and said, “Greetings, favored woman! The Lord is with you!” LUKE 1:28 (NLT)
That is an interesting word pair. It was a rare woman in that culture at that time who stood out in any way people would call favored. Women were vital, important, essential workers we might say. Few, however, held any positions of public standing.
When God wanted to redeem the world, however, he began with a woman whose heart he trusted. Mary trusted God and had both the capacity and desire to know and experience him more.
Favor is a word many use to indicate a benefit for themselves. One television preacher used the word to describe how he was blessed to move from coach to first-class on a particular flight. Another television preacher talked about his new and improved personal jet.
I double-dog dare you to read what we know about Mary from the pages of the Bible and see her claiming anything for herself. God’s favor meant she was empowered to accomplish something she could never do on her own.
Mary understood her role in God’s grand story of redemption. She accepted it, embraced it, and fulfilled that role with beauty and grace.
In the 2006 movie, _The Nativity Story_, the shepherds show up after Jesus is born. The woman who plays Mary says about Jesus, “He is for the whole world.”
That’s the way favor works. God’s favor does not make the recipient wealthier or more powerful. God’s favor flows through the recipient to bless the whole world.
Seek God’s favor not for your own personal benefit, but to benefit others. Who do you know who needs God’s favor? How could you join him in blessing that person or those people?
Mary lived a life God could bless. Her life became a blessing to all people everywhere.
May the Lord be with you as he was with Mary.
May the Lord use you to bless the whole world.
I will live a life God can bless so that I may be a blessing.
Our Father, thank you for Mary’s tender heart and how you used her to bless the whole world. In whatever way you see fit, bless me that I may be a blessing to others. Use me to enrich others. Use me to help others live lives of maximum expression for you. Use me to carry your light into the gathering darkness. Amen.
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Psalm 32:7-9 For you are my hiding place; you protect me from trouble. You surround me with songs of victory. Interlude The Lord says, “I will guide you along the best pathway for your life. I will advise you and watch over you. Do not be like a senseless horse or mule that needs a bit and bridle to keep it under control.”
Exodus 39:42, 43 So the people of Israel followed all of the Lord’s instructions to Moses. Then Moses inspected all their work. When he found it had been done just as the Lord had commanded him, he blessed them.
Exodus 33:13 “If it is true that you look favorably on me, let me know your ways so I may understand you more fully and continue to enjoy your favor. And remember that this nation is your very own people.”
Exodus 31:1-5 Then the Lord said to Moses, “Look, I have specifically chosen Bezalel son of Uri, grandson of Hur, of the tribe of Judah. I have filled him with the Spirit of God, giving him great wisdom, ability, and expertise in all kinds of crafts. He is a master craftsman, expert in working with gold, silver, and bronze. He is skilled in engraving and mounting gemstones and in carving wood. He is a master at every craft!”