She was a beautiful girl.  The kind of beauty that makes you stop just to appreciate it like a new flower in the Spring or a sunset in the fall. Long dark hair.  Flawless complexion.  A graceful smile.  And a soft voice.  Her eyes were dark brown in color, and kind to all she met. 

She was not only beautiful outwardly, Mary was a good girl.  She had always tried to do the right thing.  She had a good reputation.  Though she was young, she was admired by young and old alike not just for her appearance, but also for her character and her sweet, gentle spirit. Everyone knew her and everyone loved her.  She was recently betrothed and life was good.

But, her life changed forever the day she was met by a strange man named Gabriel.  He had a strange glow about him and he talked in a way that made you listen.  He seemed like a messenger from somewhere far beyond the small farming town of Bethlehem.  Though there was firmness in his voice, the message he had for her was deeply unsettling.

“Behold, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus.” She didn’t see that coming.

Pregnant?!  At her age? How would she tell her parents? How could she possibly explain this to Joseph?

What would people say?  What would people think?

As a thousand questions raced through her anxious heart, all she could manage to stutter was “H-H-H-How will this be, since I am a virgin?”

The angel’s answer was less than helpful. “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you; therefore the child to be born will be called holy—the Son of God.”  I mean it sounds good, but it’s the kind of answer that only begs more questions from the people that would soon be asking.

Mary knew that this was from God.  She didn’t understand it.  And it was unlikely she would be able to explain the unexplainable very well.  But, in that moment a great peace came over her like a warm blanket.  She knew the scriptures.  She had heard of what God had done for her people in times past.  

Maybe, just maybe, for whatever reason, God was working again.  And perhaps, people would better understand as time moved forward.  She humbly accepted this message and began to prepare her heart and mind for what God said would happen.  

“Behold, I am the servant of the Lord; let it be to me according to your word.” 

And so began a 33 year journey that would not only change her life, but changed the entire world as well.  Though she didn’t see it coming, she trusted that God was good and that He would make all things work for good. 

 Life rarely goes exactly as we expect it.  But it is in the

 unexpected where God often does His greatest work!