Learning Submission From a Teenager and Other Christmas Thoughts

What a year it has been!  One year ago tomorrow, Rick preached his last sermon as the pastor of the church we served for 17 years.  I took on a part time job after 27 years of being a stay at home mom. We graduated our fifth and final child from high school.  We sent our 2nd born off for a year long missions trip.  We moved out of our house to launch into Interim Pastoral Ministries.  We left our home without it being sold, not knowing where for certain we would live since housing was hard to come by where the new job was.  Life seemed to be a daze with overwhelming adjustments all at once.  It was such a blur of change that at times I seriously could not think clearly.  In fact, it was so much to process that at times I chose NOT to think but rather go through the motions of life because it was too many emotions and feelings to process all at once.  Picture a deer in the headlights….that has been me this past year.

Don’t get me wrong.  I like new changes and challenges.  I don’t like to be bored.  This though wasn’t like an exciting trip or adventure that I would go on and then come back to after I had enjoyed my fill of excitement.  This was a whole lot of changes that once put into motion would determine that some things would never be the same.  The one thing that I knew for certain was that God had a plan and I was to trust Him fully despite any of the surrounding circumstances.  Rick and I both hung onto the fact that we are loved by a savior beyond what we could ever comprehend and His plans for us are only those that are absolutely the best for us in every way.  We had prayed ALOT, trusted Him with deep DEPENDENCY and now we needed to follow His lead FULLY.  This has not always been easy!  It is one thing to quote scripture about faith, trust, and dependence on Christ, it is quite another to let go of everything and step out and do it!  Especially in your 50’s!  Aren’t these scenarios for those young radicals?  Where is David Platt for cryin’ in a bucket? What are we doing here?  Does God know who He is requiring this of and how old we are?

I wonder if Mary felt this way.  She was just a teenager when she got told that as a virgin she would bear a child who would be savior of the world.  What?  Reality check here.  She was not an older teenager but actually more on the Jr. High age level.  She was a virgin.  She was not married and was going to conceive a child.  She lived in the old school Jewish culture.  This was a case for stoning in her world.  Not to mention how would she possibly explain this to her betrothed Joseph?  He was a good man of high moral character, this was not going to sit well for their relationship.  Then this issue of a savior.  How is anyone anywhere going to believe this?  How did she herself wrap her brain around the hugeness of what was happening?  The bible says she pondered these things in her heart.  Pondering and hyper-ventilating are not the same thing.  She was at the mercy of a sovereign God who was unfolding an amazing plan of which she was to play a major role.  Not just any plan.  She was to be the mother of the only one who could bring salvation to the world.  The son of God.  God the son.  And…..she pondered.

This humbles me.  Lessons from a teenager.  I cannot fathom the changes that this young woman had to process in such a short amount of time.  I am blown away by her submission and surrender to a set of circumstances that are beyond any I have ever had to face.  It brings me hope as well.  If a teenage girl can be assigned a task as huge as this one was and she could follow through with her faith in tact and submit to a sovereign God then who am I to do any less.

Merry Christmas everyone!

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