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Prayer, Plain and Simple

By Claudia Mair Burney

Tuesday, the first week of Advent

“This is how the birth of Jesus the Messiah came about. His mother Mary was pledged to be married to Joseph, but before they came together she was found to be pregnant through the Holy Spirit.” Matthew 8:8, TNIV

Few of us think deeply about how Mary’s acceptance of Jesus mirrors our own Christian lives, but all believers are meant to be pregnant with Him. After we receive Him into the womb of our hearts, we allow Him to grow by decreasing so that He can increase. But we can’t do this alone. We need grace in order to even begin to be diligent enough to assure nothing that goes into us that will harm the Beloved Child. Prayer, God’s Word, and Love of God and neighbor all nurture Christ within us, and having thus fed and strengthened Him, we may watch in humble wonder as He is formed in us.

Gracious Father God,

The humility of Mary, the mother of our Lord, seems so out of reach. She accepted you without hesitation, but when you want to come to me I’m tempted to look at my life first, to determine myself whether or not it’s good enough for you to enter into. Lord, I’m not wise enough to understand where You may wish to dwell, so give me the faith to say like the centurion, “Lord, I do not deserve to have you come under my roof. But just say the Word, and my servant shall be healed” And then I will say with great joy,

“Come, Lord Jesus.”

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