In the sixth month of Elizabeth’s pregnancy, God sent the angel Gabriel to Nazareth, a town in Galilee, to a virgin pledged to be married to a man named Joseph, a descendant of David. The virgin’s name was Mary. The angel went to her and said, ‘Greetings, you who are highly favored! The Lord is with you.’ Mary was greatly troubled at his words and wondered what kind of greeting this might be. But the angel said to her, ‘Do not be afraid, Mary; you have found favor with God. You will conceive and give birth to a son, and you are to call him Jesus. He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. The Lord God will give him the throne of his father David, and he will reign over Jacob’s descendants forever; his kingdom will never end.’ How will this be,’ Mary asked the angel, ‘since I am a virgin?’ The angel answered, ‘The Holy Spirit will come on you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you. So the holy one to be born will be called the Son of God. Even Elizabeth your relative is going to have a child in her old age, and she who was said to be unable to conceive is in her sixth month. For no word from God will ever fail. ‘I am the Lord’s servant,’ Mary answered. ‘May your word to me be fulfilled. Then the angel left her. - Luke 1:26-38

This story is all about trust. Here is a young girl who encounters an angel and was told that she will give birth to the Son of God. Mary must have experienced every emotion that you can think of. In a moment, her life was completely flipped upside down and made to no longer be about herself. She was given an enormous responsibility and privilege to be the mother of the Son of God. Think about the risk that Mary took by agreeing with the Lords plan. She was betrothed to marry a man, which was taken to be as serious as marriage and could only be broken by a divorce. She was living in a culture where children only happened after marriage, so she would not only take ridicule, but so would her family. Mary was faced with a choice to follow what the Lord had planned for her or to run from it. She chose to trust him. She chose to say yes to having her reputation smudged and to her life being completely different than she had ever anticipated. Despite what was ahead of her, she chose to trust that what the Lord willed was so much better than her reputation.

Trust is a choice and it's not always an easy one. Sometimes what the Lord is calling us to is in no way, shape, or form going to be easy. The bottom line is that we have to wake up each day and choose to believe that what the Lord is calling us to is better than we can plan for our own future. We have to choose to surrender our own plans so that we can submit to what he has for us. Imagine if Mary had decided that her reputation was much more important than what God had asked of her. She would have missed out of the opportunity to carry the Son of God in her belly for 9 months. She would have missed the incredible chance to be his mother while he was on earth and fulfill a role that no one else ever will.

Trust can be hard when we don't have evidence that it's worth it. When you trust God, you might not get the outcome you expected, but you will get the best thing for you. It's amazing that, when we're obedient, God often will have His will completed while also being really good to us. The point isn't to always expect to get something from God, but to trust that He actually does know what's best for the whole world.

We all have something in our lives that will take courage to choose to trust the Lord. What is he asking out to trust him with? What opportunities is he leading you into if you just say yes?

Lord I want to trust you. I choose to trust you. Help me see the places in my life that I am not trusting you. I know that the plans you have for me are so much better than my own so I pray that I will consistently choose to trust you.

- Laura DeGroot