"Motherhood is not a burden to be borne, it is a privilege to be enjoyed. It is not a trial of endurance, it is a time of celebration." Winnie Dalley

12.27.2010

The Handmaid of the Lord

These are some thoughts that I found about the virgin Mary that are specifically geared toward women. Hope everyone had a glorious Christmas!

I was quite young at the time the Lord sent His angel Gabriel to me. I had tried all my life to serve the Lord. I kept myself clean and pure and my heart and spirit virtuous. I knew the Lord and His goodness. I had faith in the prophecies concerning the Messiah, but had no idea of my role in the fulfillment of those prophecies. When the angel appeared to me he said, "Hail, thou that art highly favoured, the Lord is with thee: blessed art thou among women."
I wondered at his saying and he, knowing this said, "Fear not, Mary: for thou hast found favor with God. And behold, thou shalt conceive in thy womb, and bring forth a Son and shalt call His name Jesus. He shall be great, and shall be called the Son of the Highest."
I wondered how this would be, seeing that I knew not a man. He told me that the Holy Ghost would come upon me and the power of the Highest would overshadow me. "For with God, nothing shall be impossible." I did not doubt at his saying, but I replied "Be it unto me according to thy word." I trusted in the word of the Lord and submitted to His will.
I went quickly to see my dear friend and cousin Elizabeth. As I greeted her, she immediately told me that I was a blessed woman. The Holy ghost had bourne witness to her before i even spoke that I was to be the mother of the Son of God, and she rejoiced with me. Her faith and testimony strengthened mine and caused me to praise the Lord.
"My soul doth magnify the Lord, and my spirit hath rejoiced in God my Saviour. For He hath regarded the low estate of His handmaiden: for, behold, from henceforth all generations shall call me blessed. For He that is mighty hath done great things to me: and Holy is His name."
"And His mercy is on them that fear Him from generation to generation. He hath showed strength with his arm. He hath scattered the proud in the imagination of their hearts. He hath filled the hungry with good things."(Luke 1)
I know you too have felt to praise the Lord. I know you have felt the strength of His arm. What a blessed thing it is to be one of His daughters- to be a woman! He has given us all a special role- that of a woman- and as women- mothers. Whether of our own children, or of those around us...women are mothers.
My experience was definately unique, but perhaps you can relate to it. You see, I grew up in the small town of Nazareth where everyone knew what was going on in everyone else's lives. I assumed that most people would call me a sinner and not believe the miraculous nature of my conception, and I was right. I endured much persecution throughout my entire life. But, I did not fear men and I bore the burden of being misunderstood. I focused on the Lord.
You as women of our Savior's true church also have the choice to listen to the voices of the world, or to the voice of your God. Listen to Him and rejoice in Him! As you celebrate our Savior's birth at this time of the year, do celebrate! But not just during this season. Make everyday of your life a celebration of His infinite love and sacrifice for you.
And help eachother to celebrate! Women need women! Just as my relationship with my dear Elizabeth was such a strength to me, turn to and nurture eachother as women. And as Elizabeth and I rejoiced together in our miraculous motherhoods- rejoice in yours and hold the title of mother sacred in your heart. For it is sacred. Teach your children and the world what a divine and spectacular gift it is to be a mother. I know how much that role is valued by Him.
Trust in Him and submit your whole self to Him- that is where true happiness is found.
Learn to be submissive, for in reality our own will is the only thing that we can really give to the Lord, because everything else is already His.
I invite you to take time to ponder on all that our Savior has done for you, and all that he does everyday for you. I know as you listen and learn from His Holy Spirit, that your soul will magnify the Lord and your spirit will rejoice!

12.07.2010