And Mary said, Behold the handmaid of the Lord; be it unto me according to thy word. And the angel departed from her.
DID MARY HAVE AN OUTSIDE JOB?
Let me ask you a question. It's about Mary of Nazareth. What did that terrified girl say when she was chosen to be the mother of the Son of God? (Luke 1:35) Did she run to the telephone for the current listing of nursery schools? Did she call Joseph's mother to see if she would baby-sit "that holy thing" while she worked in the market place or assisted in the local library? Did she make arrangements with cousin Elizabeth to care for Jesus? Did she reason, "Elizabeth had to stay home anyhow; and it isn't that much more work to care for two?" I DON'T THINK SO! We read that Mary, after affirming to herself and to the angel her virginity, yielded her body to God for motherhood, presenting it as a "living sacrifice" unto Him. (Romans12:1) She said, "Be it unto me according to Thy Word." (Luke 1:35b) With that declaration, the angel departed as unexpectedly as he appeared. Therefore, we see Mary, not only alone and puzzled, but also YIELDED and TRANSFORMED to the PERFECT will of God. (Romans 12:2)
DR. IRONSIDE ON MARY OF NAZARETH
Let me quote Dr. Harry Ironside, concerning Mary: "When He [God] chose a young woman for the high honor of becoming the mother of the Saviour, He did not take some frivolous worldly girl, living in carelessness and enjoying a butterfly existence. he chose a pious, lovely, young woman, who delighted in doing the will of God and ever sought to be subject to His Word."
MARY WAS A DOER OF THE WORD
Remember the parable in Luke where Jesus said the "seed" was the "Word"? In my opinion, young Mary, when she heard the Word, received it with JOY. She really did! (Luke 8:13) But more than joy was her keeping of the Word and the patience she manifested "for her days to be accomplished" (Luke 2:6) to bring forth "the fruit of her womb" (Luke1:42). Why does the Word find root and bear fruit? The Bible says because of an "honest and good heart." (Luke8:15) So, we find Mary, not only a hearer, but an undeceived DOER of the Word and Work of God. (James 1:22-25) Do you agree?
Mary did not blaspheme God's Word by ignoring it, or disregarding it. She showed no impious irreverence ever! Jesus said to the Pharisees in John, chapter 8, "He that is of God heareth God's Words." None of us can argue that Mary was not "of God." I wonder, can we also, as mature Christian women, be as she, accepting God's will for our lives; and pray with young Mary, "be it unto me according to Thy word."
IS GOD'S WILL TOO HARD?
Then, why is it that many of us, of the female gender, do not listen to God's Words as to where our place is, as to what our deportment should be, and how to accept God's will for our lives? Is it because God's will is too hard? I must admit that often at first blush it seems that way. Or is it our desire for independance that keeps us from obeying him? Do we have career goals contrary to the Word of God? Are we, like Eve, perverting the Word of God to suit our own needs and ambitions? I don't know. I am just asking. Yet, we must admit that something is wrong in most of our "Christian" homes today! Is this ailment a new thing since our grandother's day? Or has the blight been with us always?
WHERE IS A WOMAN'S PLACE?
I have a personal conviction - and I think it is Biblically based - that the wife's place is in the home and/or with her husband! Maybe I am old fashioned. So is the Bible. Bear in mind, I'm not talking about unmarried or widowed women, like Lydia, or Ruth, who have to earn their own living; but am remembering Paul's friend, Priscilla, Aquila's wife. She worked side by side with her husband in their family business, even sailing in a boat to Syria with her husband and Paul, at least once. (Acts 18:2-3, 18, 26)
On the other hand we have Mrs. "Far Above Rubies" who tended well to her home and household, not only providing for it's needs, but also selling her needlework to merchants in town; but she always returned to her homebase, the place where she spent her time-where she stitched, and tucked, and hemmed, and basted... She made her husband proud!
Some men trusted their wives; but sadly they proved to be untrustworthy women. Recently a famous country singer died. she was noted for a song she sung that said she'd stand by her man. Her words confused me, didn't they you? I Kept wondering which of her five husbands was she standing by?! In contrast, the virtuous woman of Proverb 31 had proven to her husband she was trustworthy. Yes, her husbands heart could "safely" trust in her. (Proverbs 31;10-31) There was no whistling in the dark by that husband! Oh, to be that kind of wife!
A WIFE'S HOMEFRONT ASSIGNMENT
I personally believe that if wives took the homefront assignment, the econimic situation in our country would be turned around! (Of course, I know nothing about economics!) We would live in less expensive housing afforable by one salary. Of course, our children would not have closets full of name-brand shoes, or designer scarves, or gold chains and leather jackets. What a SHAME! If everyone lived this way - making your own bread, and sewing your own clothes, with weekly yard sales, and bulk buying, the father's paycheck WOULD stretch. Couldn't it?
Let's Learn from Priscilla. Maybe we wives could learn from her, or "Mrs. Far Above Rubies" who crafted in home with occasional family outings to the market place. Doctoring, Lawyering can all be done at home, too, as well as all manner of home businesses -- especially for women whose children have left the nest. Wives could work side by side with their husbands like Priscilla. With the privileges of Home Schooling, much inventiveness could be thought of for home work and the family working together.
BACK TO MARY
Today, as in the days of Mary, the Word of God is not to be spoken of, addressed, and is received with impious irreverence. Can you imagine if Mary had disregarded God's Words? It's hard to imagine but what if she had refused to say, "Be it unto me according to Thy word." That certainly would have been disrespectful to God and His will for her life. Wouldn't it? It's hard to believe that our indifference to simple, godly, clean living could be considered blasphemy to God's Word; but it is! (Titus 2:5) How can we as women disregard God's Word on a regular basis? Down deep in your hearts aren't you glad Mary obeyed God's Words? I AM!
(Permission to given by Mrs. D. A. (author)
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