the annunciation: accepting the challenge and celebrating hope
…And in that moment, Mary utters her first words in the gospel…words that speak for all of humanity, in all our confusion:
“How can this be?”
She seeks an answer, an explanation, some plausible reason for something so implausible.
How many of us have asked the same question?
How often have we struggled to understand God’s plan in our lives?
How many of us have been blindsided by events we never expected – a twist on life’s path that we never saw coming, for better or for worse — and asked ourselves, in fury or despair or bewilderment:
How can this be?
And here Mary is told, simply:
“Nothing is impossible with God.”
And that is enough.
That is all she needs to hear. She will accept God’s will and she will carry it out.
It’s – in every sense – extraordinary. How is it that someone so young can so easily say “Yes” to what will undoubtedly be difficult, and painful, and maybe even scandalous? The very idea of it is a shock. It goes against our culture.
We live in an age when it’s so easy to say “No.” We can make life what we want it to be – even if that’s not what it should be.