“I am the Lord’s servant, may your word to me be fulfilled.” (Luke 1:38)
The first time you ever hear about the town Nazareth is in Luke’s Gospel. It is never mentioned in the Old Testament. You won’t find it in ancient history, because no one or nothing of importance had ever come out of Nazareth. Scholars have estimated it may have had at most 200 people. Nazareth was the kind of town you went through, not the kind of town you went to. So why in the world would God make the most momentous announcement in history in a small, nothing-town full of paganism? Because, he knew in that town was a little teenaged girl that was humble enough for him to use.
However, even though she portrayed extreme humility as she served the Lord’s purpose for her, embracing that purpose did not come without its own set of challenges. Because Mary became the mother of Jesus as an unmarried virgin, malicious gossip followed Mary all of her life. Common sense suggest that Mary knew this was a double-edged sword. Yes, this birth would be a blessing that she would enjoy, but it would be a burden she would carry to her grave. Knowing the cost of this birth and the price that she would pay here is her response, “I am the Lord’s servant, may your word to me be fulfilled” (Luke 1:38).
Through this statement, we see the true greatness of Mary. The word used for “servant” in this text refers to the lowliest kind of servant. It refers to someone who voluntarily would sell themselves into slavery. It was the most humble act that a person could perform in that society. Do you want to know what made Mary such a great woman? Perhaps the greatest woman who has ever lived? It was that statement that put her at the top of the list.
Mary was a nobody who became greater than almost everybody, because she simply said five words and she not only meant them, but she lived them, “It is not about me.” Because she went lower, she went higher than she ever imagined and so can we.
Dear Father, thank you for the example Mary set in what it looks like to be humble no matter what. I pray that you would give me the same humility and that I would realize that it’s not about me, but rather everything is all about you. In Jesus’ name, amen.