4th December 2010

Are You Favoured By God?

“Don’t be afraid, Mary, you have found favour with God.”
Luke 1:30 (NIV UK)

Are you afraid?

There is plenty to be afraid of in the world today. The threat of nuclear extinction, terrorist attacks, natural disasters to name but a few. Then again people’s lives are often riddled with more personal fears: growing old, becoming penniless, being lonely, debilitating disease, rejection, death itself. Cheerful, isn’t it?

Mary was “greatly troubled” because an angel appeared to her unexpectedly and said politely and yet mysteriously, “Greetings, you are highly favoured! The Lord is with you” (1:28-29). Would you not have been startled had it been you? I think we all would have been more than a little afraid.

The message of this passage is quite simple. No matter what is happening in your life, which might sometimes be very scary indeed, don’t be afraid because God has chosen you and has favoured you. It can be a tall order, a leap of faith in fact, but the spiritual reality is that Christ says to all of us, just as he said to the frightened disciples trapped in the their boat on that stormy lake, “Take courage! It is I. Don’t be afraid” (Matthew 14:27).

The angel was announcing to Mary that a miracle was soon to take place: she would give birth to the Saviour of the world. One day the child whom she carried physically would become the Christ who dwells in all believers spiritually, the “mystery, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory” (Colossians 1:27).

Don’t be afraid. Christ is in you. You are favoured by God!

Eternal God, thank you that you comfort us through your words. Thank you that I need not be afraid because you have shown favour to me through the grace of Jesus Christ, who dwells in me through the Spirit. In Jesus’ name.

Study by James Henderson 

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