“But Mary kept all these things and pondered them in her heart” (Luke 2:19, NKJV).
Rushed, excited shepherds breathlessly telling their story. A sky full of angels, ablaze with glory, they said. The little town abuzz with the news. Mary sat in deep thought, absorbing all of this. But most of all, she looked fixedly at the breathtaking newborn in her arms. All-encompassing peace emanated powerfully from His tiny body, coursing through her being.
We ached for You for so long… You are finally here! You have come to us! How, how have You taken this shape?? How, HOW is it that I get to hold You? she whispered to Him, in awe. She kissed His perfect forehead. His beautiful, vulnerable baby eyes looked up into hers. She gazed into them, lost in absolute wonder.
The Savior of the world had subjected Himself to the need to be held by her human arms. To the need to be nursed at her breast. To the need to be cuddled so very close and cherished. Everything inside of the young mother rose up in response, pouring out all her overwhelmed love to Him. She clutched Him tenderly to her bosom, drinking in His nearness, drinking in the connection of His absolute dependency on her. She treasured these moments fiercely, pondering them in her heart with exultation.
Mary set the example for us. That first starry Christmas night, she showed us the correct posture for our own hearts. Keeping these things. Absorbing them into the very depths of our souls. Pondering them with all the passion of our inner being.
I read this relevant quote the other day, and found it so apt:
“To not pay attention is to miss the wonder of being alive… In these days of multitasking, social media, and dawn-to-dusk rushing around, I wonder if we’re going too fast to do so. Or if we’ve fooled ourselves into believing that we’re accomplishing so much, when what we’re really doing is making treasure of the trivial…”*
This Advent, let’s let Mary’s awe capture our hearts. Let’s keep these things and ponder them in our hearts, as she did. Let’s quiet ourselves completely and lean in to listen to Holy Spirit’s magnificent whisper. In the stillness, let’s let the astonishing wonder of our Savior’s coming overwhelm our spirits once again with hushed, gentle peace.
If you use Spotify, check out this beautiful song. I think it captures some of the wonder: https://open.spotify.com/track/4a37BnXhhtW7TNhIh6MPpy
Did you get a chance to listen? What did you think?
*52 Little Lessons from A Christmas Carol by Bob Welch, copyright Thomas Nelson