Spirit Filled Women Of God Sister's In Christ Ministries                   

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         "Mary the Mother of Jesus Christ:  A tender Caretaker''

Have you ever wondered why God has blessed you abundantly or has placed you in a position of responsibilities? Mary of Nazareth must have asked these questions when the angel announced to her the coming birth of Jesus Christ. She was a humble young girl living in obscurity in the little village of Nazareth. While Mary was of the tribe of Judah and the line of David, God chose her not only because of her genealogy but also because of her godliness. This humble young woman would become the most honored woman of all time when she gave birth to the Messiah. Little is known about Mary, though many people revere her. Her quite spirit and gentle manner spoke powerfully. Throughout history artists have depicted Mary in royal clothes to reflect her beauty and character. The Scriptures, however, make clear that Mary had inner beauty: true peace and joy from God. Artists also show Mary with a radiant countenance to reflect her spirit. These representations accurately show tenderness on the face of Mary, the mother of Jesus.

Among all of the godly Jewish women in Palestine, why did God choose Mary of Nazareth to give birth to the Savior of the World? In His divine wisdom God chose a woman who would humbly follow His call. As a native, innocent young maiden Mary was totally dependent on God for protection and provision. Three of the Gospels and Acts mention Mary, but only Luke includes a full account of announcement about Jesus' birth, an event that would change the course of history. Luke 1:26-38 describes Mary as ''highly favored'' and '' blessed,'' one chosen by God for a very special task. Initially, Mary was startled when an angel appeared to her and spoke. After the explanation and with a calm faith, Mary obedience accepted God's call. Her word were tender; In Luke 1:38, she spoke these words from her heart. ''Behold the maidservant of the Lord! Let it be to me according to your word.'' The virgin Mary gave birth to Jesus, then with Joseph, a simple carpenter, reared Jesus. Mary nurtured Him for 30 years before He began His full-time ministry. All mothers bear a great responsibility in parenting, but Mary had the additional challenge of caring for the Savior of the World. The Scriptures do not reveal how Mary mothered Jesus, but we know that she showed Him great love and instilled in Him godly virtue. Mary is a worthy example for mother today. The Scriptures give a glimpse of Jesus as a child. According to Jewish tradition, He was circumcised when He was 8 days old. Then He was dedicated to the Lord in temple ceremony in Jerusalem after Mary's 40 days of purification. Mary and Joseph followed the practices of the law of Moses in rearing their holy Son. They marveled as young Jesus was recognized  as the Messiah first by Simeon, a devout man, and then by the prophetess Anna. Mary's tender heart must have been filled with joy as Jesus increased in wisdom and stature, and in favor with God and men'' (Luke 2: 52). As Mary taught the Scriptures to Jesus, He learned about the prophecies of the Old Testament and grew in His awareness that He was the fulfillment of those prophecies. The mother who cares for Him tenderly and met His physical and personal needs was worried about Jesus when He remained at the temple to learn from the teachers. But again and again, tender Mary remembered the destiny of her Son and poured out on Him a mother's love. Mary and Joseph reared Jesus in a godly home, teaching Him by word and example. Mary herself had been faithful to God's call. She continued to learn about God and His will for her Son's life, and she always demonstrated love toward other. Mary cared unselfishly for her Son and others. Her tender heart broke as Jesus was rejected by men, scorned, abused, and crucified at Calvary. As Mary stood beneath the rugged cross, this mother's grief must have been unbearable. But God strengthened her hurting heart, and Jesus tenderly spoke His last words of love to His mother: ''Woman, behold your son'' (John 19:26).

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