The Right Questions
The Right Questions
And Mary said to the angel, “How will this be, since I am a virgin?”
Luke 1:34 (ESV)
Ilove the Christmas season, when we focus on the miracle of Christ coming to earth in human flesh.
As I read the familiar verses in the first chapter of Luke, I’m always struck by the contrast between Zechariah and Mary. Both of them received a visit from the angel Gabriel with some amazing news – a miraculous child would be born. Both of them responded to Gabriel with a question. But Zechariah’s response, “How will I know this for certain?” questions God’s ability. This was clearly the wrong question to ask. Because of his doubt, he was struck dumb until after his son was born. In contrast, Mary’s response, “How can this be?” questions God’s methodology. She never doubts whether he can or will do what Gabriel has told her. She is just wondering how it will happen, given her virgin status.
Lord, thank you that you are a personal God who draws near to us, questions and all. Help us to seek to know you more, even when we don’t fully understand your ways. May our lives bring you glory. Amen.
Too often, I ask the wrong questions of God. When something happens that I don’t understand, I want to know why. Why did God allow cancer to take my friend, even though we faithfully prayed for her? Why do bad things keep happening to the sweet young family who is beginning to follow God? From Mary & Zechariah’s stories I can learn that there is nothing wrong with asking questions of God. The key is to ask the right questions. Instead of asking Why, I can follow Mary’s example and ask How? How, Lord, will you be glorified in this situation? How will you work this circumstance for good? How will I know you better as a result of this?
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