Friday, December 17, 2021
Luke 1:38 “I am the Lord’s servant,” Mary answered. “May it be to me as you have said.” Then the angel left her.
A fast food chain that had previously been relatively unknown became nationally popular by choosing a slogan that caught on quickly. “Have it your way!” In an attempt to appear helpful and serving, what they were really doing was capitalizing on the self-centered nature of the customer. We are constantly bombarded from secular society with the philosophy of entitlement and the presumed rights we have to please ourselves by either having it or doing it our way.
In stark contrast to that philosophy stands the statement of Mary in response to the angel’s announcement of God’s purpose for her life. After asking how this miraculous event would happen to her, she fully surrenders self and accepts the nature of a servant. With an attitude of total humility Mary says, “May it be to me as you have said.” No debate. No suggested changes or adaptations to the plan. No looking around to see who’s watching this great example of humility. Just quiet and complete surrender to what God said. “Have it your way, God!“
We may be tempted to think that her surrender was easy because she was being asked to do something so wonderful. She got to be pregnant. She got to bear a son, the fulfillment of her cultural responsibility as a wife. She got to participate in the eternal purpose of Jehovah to save the world from its sin. That choice seems like a no-brainer, right? But what about all of the problems she would encounter by making that choice to surrender? There would be the possibility of losing her fiancé. She would be considered an adulteress by her society. Her son would have to grow up as an illegitimate child, scorned by his youthful friends. She had to know all of those things, and yet she considered the call of God to be more significant than the opinion of people.
The same call of God goes out to us today. He has called us to be a part of His incredible plan to bring His grace to a lost world? He has sent His Holy Spirit upon us to overshadow self and the flesh and empower us to accomplish God’s eternal purpose. We have the choice of two responses: we can look up to God in anticipation that the King will tell us “Have it your way,” or we can look up to the King and tell Him, “Have it your way.“
In the first response there appears to be safety because we believe we can control the social fallout of our choice. But in the second response there is incomparable fulfillment, knowing that we are participating with Almighty God in His glorious plan of salvation. Response #1 elevates self and society over God: response #2 recognizes the need of self and society that only God can meet. Response #1 leaves us at the mercy of man and destined to the world’s destruction. Response #2 puts us in the merciful hand of God and guarantees us eternal life. Seems like a no-brainer to me!
“Have it your way, God!“