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The Nativity & Fruitfulness

The Nativity story reminds us that fruitfulness is not always what we expect it will be, but that God always has a divine plan that’s bigger and better than we can fathom.

I can imagine that Mary had her own ideas and plans for how she would be fruitful. She’d follow the traditional path of betrothal, marriage, and having a humble family. She sounds a lot like us women, doesn’t she? I’m sure she just wanted the typical path, as most of us do.

But God had different plans for Mary. Instead, he made her the physical mother of Jesus, the Messiah, and a spiritual mother of us all. She would have one son and many more spiritual children. She embraced God’s plan one step at a time, and was open to the Lord moving in her life. 

And we know how the story goes… there are so many unexpected things that happen to Mary. Getting pregnant at 14 years old. Giving birth in a stable with no room at the inn. Fleeing to Egypt. Losing her son in the temple. Watching her son go from town to town healing and working miracles, and proclaiming the Gospel. Enduring her son being crucified and having her heart pierced in sorrow.

This was no fairy tale story. It was one of ups and downs, twists and turns, joys and sorrows, sufferings and fears – just like our stories. 

Look at Jesus’ influence in our world today. Look at how Mary is revered today in so many nations. Clearly God’s plan worked in mysterious, profound ways that Mary could not have anticipated.

One of the main lessons of Christmas and the witness of Mary in bringing forth Jesus is that for God to work in profound ways, we have to let go of our plans and embrace the unexpected ways that He wants to make us fruitful. Our path may not be the typical path of a woman, like Mary’s, but Mary’s example teaches us that it’s OK. God will make amazing things happen when we trust His leading.

Today, let us thank Mary for her openness to the Holy Spirit, and ask for her help as we wait for God to move in our lives and bring forth a fruitful ending.

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