Hail, Favored One

Meditation: Luke 1:26-38
View NAB Reading at USCCB.org

“Hail, favored one!” (Luke 1:28)

Face-to-face with the mighty angel Gabriel, Mary was “greatly troubled” (Luke 1:29). Gabriel announced God’s plan for her to conceive through the Holy Spirit and bear a son who would inherit the throne of David and rule forever. And Mary, despite not having all the answers, was able to say: “May it be done to me according to your word” (1:38).

The words are so simple, so faith-filled, that we might miss out on what was behind them. By saying “yes” to the angel, Mary also said “no” to many things. She closed the door on an alternative life that had its own attractions: a life of quiet contemplation, out of the limelight, surrounded only by friends and fam­ily; a life of simple joys and everyday challenges. And yet with just a few words, she put aside all her dreams to embrace God’s dreams instead.

We can read this passage and marvel at Mary’s faith—and lament our lack of faith in comparison. But it’s important to see that when he greeted her, Gabriel called Mary full of grace, not full of faith. Mary’s “yes” to God was the result of the grace God had given her, not the result of her own willpower and forceful personality.

This is a key point for all of us. For in the final analysis, faith is not some­thing we drum up on our own. It’s a gift given to us by a gracious, gen­erous God. It’s a grace that he pours into us, a potent seed that is wait­ing to be plunged into the soil of our hearts. We may think we have weak faith, but the truth is God has given us all the faith we will ever need. We just have to learn how to yield to this great gift.

So what do you think? Can you say “YES” to God today? Yes, you can. God’s gift of grace guarantees it!
Father, thank you for the gift of faith. Knowing you is the greatest joy of my life.”

Melinda Dumitrescu - Voici que l'ange Gabriel   http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aXFOKQTYQQE&feature=related

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