Mary is perhaps the most popular woman in the Word. Perhaps the most popular woman in Biblical history. After all, she is partly responsible for birthing, feeding, watching over, and raising the greatest Man Who ever lived and the Saviour of the world. Countless songs, articles, books, and poems have already been written about Mary and there are multiple lessons that we can learn from her life; so, we won’t try to say anything new here. Below are three important lessons we can learn from the life of Mary, the mother of Jesus.
1. Mary was available. The Bible does not mention anything special that Mary had that caused God to choose her to carry His Only Son for nine months. She wasn’t rich. She didn’t have any special talent. She wasn’t popular. But she was chosen. God did not need her abilities, He just needed her availability. In Luke 1:26-38, when the angel Gabriel announced Christ’s birth to Mary, Mary’s humble response to this unexpected news was: “Behold the maidservant of the Lord! Let it be to me according to your word.”
There was absolutely nothing spectacular about Mary. She was just an ordinary girl used by God in an extraordinary way. Just like God used Mary, God can use ordinary girls like me and you to do extraordinary things in this world. We don’t have to be rich or popular. God does not look at our ability. He is looking for our availability. If we are humble, trust Him, and make ourselves available to His purpose and power and plans, God will use us in ways far beyond we can even dream of.
2. Mary submitted herself to the will of God. Before Jesus was born, Mary had to go through the embarrassment of being accused of being an unwed mother. She had to go through the fear of her soon-to-be husband, Joseph, thinking of putting her aside. She had to go through the uncertainty of leaving Nazareth while pregnant and traveling to Jerusalem. She had to give birth without the support of her mother or girlfriends, in a stable of all places, in a new town. And thirty-three years after the birth of Jesus, Mary had to endure the ordeal of having her firstborn Son accused of having a demon, of being a drunkard, of speaking blasphemy. Mary experienced the pain of seeing her own Son beaten and whipped, spat on, mocked, kicked, nailed to a cruel cross, pierced in His side. Mary helped to bury her Son.
Yet in all of this, Mary continued to trust God. She knew that Jesus was not hers to keep. If Mary had been able to save Jesus, I think that she would have died in His place. But while she was His mother, she also knew that she was a sinner and He the perfect sacrifice. Mary did not question God. She did not waver in her faith. She accepted the death of Jesus as God’s will and remained faithful to the end. God now wants to know if we will accept His plan for our lives. Will we remain faithful to Him even through pain, uncertainty, fear, difficulty, and death?
3. Mary accepted her Son as her Saviour. Many people today have unfortunately elevated Mary to rank alongside God and give her just as much praise as they give Jesus. But there is no indication that Mary ever became haughty or thought of herself as above redemption and beyond saving because she had given birth to the Messiah. Mary knew her place. She knew she was a sinner in ned of salvation. She knew that Jesus, her Son, was the Christ and the only One Who could forgive her and give her eternal life. Mary believed on Him.
Jesus died for Mary, His mother. He died for me. He died for you. Jesus died for the sins of the world. If we want to be forgiven, redeemed, made new, and given the gift of eternal life we must believe and make Mary’s Son our Saviour.
For there is born to you this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord. – Luke 2:11