Thursday, November 29, 2012

Mary's Words

This is the first in a series of Advent posts on some of the best gifts I have received.

A huge artistic flare flows through my friend Mary. I use ‘flows through’ purposefully. She uses her art to bless others. It manifests itself when she sits at the piano sharing the beauty of her music, or when she excitedly tells you of her son’s mission trip while turning pages of the photo-journal she created to savor the memories. You quickly notice her standard of excellence; it is one of her motivating factors; with her art she honors God.

God also gifted Mary with a heart to serve. For many years she employed her piano skills for public school music competitions. Her music formed the backdrop for the flutist or the trumpeter to shine. She often presses through physical pain to create and to bless others. And all the while she prays for those linked to her creations.

I’m a distant cousin of Mary in my desire to create memory albums (my work does not qualify for the title ‘photo-journal’). Mine record the visits with my long-distance GRAND-children. Knowing I enjoy this, Mary has facilitated my efforts by gifting me with ideas, stickers, tools, and her time. Her gifts to me make my scrapbooks more artistic than I could have created without her help.

Mary serves in another way too. She generously serves with her words. She often uses her words to respond to my words—this blog. This gift of affirmation encourages me to keep processing, to keep writing. I appreciate this gift a lot.

With her scrapbook related gifts, Mary is gifting me with her strengths.
With her gifts of words, Mary is gifting me according to my strengths.

I know another Mary too. Her story is recorded for me in the gospels. Mary, the mother of Jesus, gave a phenomenal gift with her words in Luke 1:38, “Behold I am the servant of the Lord; let it be to me according to your word.” With these words, Mary submitted to delivering the greatest gift in history.

She did it for God.
She did it for you.
She did it for me.

Mary, my friend, your gift of words bless, encourage, and challenge. Thank you for
emulating Mary the mother of Jesus with your words—submitting to God and offering life-giving gifts to others.

“Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in your sight, O LORD, my rock and my redeemer”.
Psalm 19:14

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