and what at first she had held tight within faith’s fist,
small mass of God-cells somersaulting against internal walls.
Laughter must have rose up deep from that womb as God’s seed played in motion within her. Worship had consummated, (My Soul proclaims the glory of the Lord, and my Spirit rejoices in God my Savior,) and she was filled, growing large with Joy.
Because what is Joy except God’s Presence in full banquet form?
And she was carrying the Master of the Feast within her belly. She would never be the same empty virgin.
But joy marked by God-full Presence has its sacrifice.
In Sunday school this morning, we colored icons of Mary holding an infant Jesus and talked about her saying “yes” to God. She stood holding faith-fueled courage in a world where stone throwing was common for knocked-up girls.
Her great “yes” – Be it unto me as You have said – was bravery incarnate and I look into my heart and see a faith that wavers when the god of comfort ducks behind the clouds.
Young Jackson reminds us that she was the first Christian and I nod because she was the first human “yes” to Christ, the first to bear God in the world within her flesh. Our icon coloring page reminds us that her hand was always pointing in Jesus’ direction, showing us where to hold our gaze. Jesus’ infant hand always holds out a blessing for those who seek Him.
When we walk pregnant with God-full Presence, our orientation changes too. We become pointers. Bill Bright wrote a beautiful tract, the Spirit-filled Life, in which he illustrates the change that occurs when we are filled with God. A simple circle of the self, a simple chair in the center, a simple cross drawn on the chair, and we take a joyful leap off the chair and orient ourselves in worship. We are no longer our own hero demanding homage. No longer a god demanding ambitious sacrifices.
How many times a day do we have to remember to climb down off that chair, listen to Spirit’s Voice, breathe in Pneuma pure and breathe out the toxic of Self-centered pollution?
How do you climb off the chair? How do you listen, my friend? How do you make room for God within you?
(Reposted from Feast of the Annunciation last March)
Counting gifts, always counting, because thanksgiving invites the Presence:
1. wonder and lights, the hunt through the town
2. my girl, joining the wonder with lit-up fairy wings…I match, mommy
3. mild days and time to turn on my camera in the open air
4. God is at work in my beloved friends on the Journey
5. He invites me to be a treasure seeker and promises that it will never be in vain
6. The advent candles lit and theology handed on a platter to my beautiful little ones, come to drink with wide eyes
7. Poetry magazine’s podcast. Pure joy of rolling words.
8. Advent, emptying and preparing and the drumms along with O Come O Come Emmanuel.
9. The Artists’ Way and God’s giving confidence that He will keep lighting the darkness
10. Precious girl practicing prayer of being with Jesus before bed. Lead me, Mama.
And always enjoy linking up with the Soli Deo Gloria Sisterhood under Jen Ferguson’s gracious hosting: