Well, I did my two Mary monologues at church last Sunday during the whole fantastic, incredibly moving Great Joy Christmas program. The whole program was just beautiful. You can see it here:
Meanwhile, here's the text of the first Mary monologue -- adapted from the first chapter of my book, Wrestling with Wonder (coming out next Sept from Zondervan). Mary asks some great questions for all of us this Christmas season!
MARY AND A MESSENGER
Christmas changes everything. JESUS changes everything. He changed me.
I’m Mary. I was his mother. He changed this ordinary girl, with her ordinary life, in an ordinary village in Galilee.
It was early in the morning, and my mother had gone to gather gossip near Nazareth’s well. I stood by the grinding stone (much like today), my fingers sunk deep in the warm dough of the day's bread. A sound rustled behind me. I turned.
And saw him.
A man, but not a man. Like nothing I have ever seen before. Tall and strong. Shining. Splendid.
And absolutely terrifying.
He looked at me, his gaze like fire in my soul. And he said:
“Rejoice! Rejoice, favored one, the Lord is with you.”
He said it again. “Do not be afraid. You have found favor with God.”
Then, he whispered one single word: “Behold ...”
But what he wanted me to behold was impossible.
He said, “Behold, you will conceive in the womb and will bear a son and you will call his name Jesus. He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High and the Lord God will give him the throne of his father, David. And he will rule over the house of Jacob into the ages and of his kingdom there will be no end!”
What?! I grasped at just the first impossibility. “How will this be? I’m, um, a virgin.”
But he didn’t speak of men or of marriage. He spoke of miracles. He told me the Holy Spirit himself would come upon me and God’s power would overshadow me. And this tiny little baby boy would be called holy, the very Son of God.
An astounding promise. But more than a promise. It was a call. A question. Would I leave all my plans, all my hopes, behind me? Would I lay aside my ordinary life to embrace something impossible?
“Nothing is impossible with God,” he said.
“No word from God will ever fail."
Did I dare believe it? Do I dare say yes? … I knew what it meant. Nothing would be the same again. No one would understand. Could I bear that kind of shame? Could I bear their disbelief? …And more, could I bear that kind of beauty? Could I bear the wonder of it all?
And in that ordinary moment, on an ordinary day, in my ordinary life, the heavens waited
. . . Would I give my life for this great, impossible JOY?