Hello friends! I hope everyone had a great first week of December! Mine ended with one of my very best friends getting engaged to the man of her dreams! We celebrated the two of them big yesterday, and I am so thankful for their friendship and their love story! This friend of mine is also a nurse that just finished her Master’s in nursing to become a Family Nurse Practitioner! She’s quite the rockstar! We also got a picture of all the nurses at the party to celebrate nursing! Here are the pictures from the celebration:
I have recently found myself reflecting more on the Christmas story and the experience that Mary had to go through. Mary went through quite a life altering experience. (Side note to preface: Josephs whole world was changed just as Mary’s was, but for this post, I am going to be focusing on Mary and her journey. However, this is not meant to discredit Joseph’s role and how obedient and faithful he stayed in the midst of his world being flipped!)
As a nurse in a hospital, I am surrounded by patients dealing with acute issues that have life altering experiences whether that be because of a new diagnosis or new exacerbation in a previous diagnosis. It is a dark, desperate place that we meet them in. It is hard to discern just the right things to say in these moments. How is it possible to promote positivity and joy while still validating their feelings and sympathizing? Just as Mary’s whole life changed in one moment, most of my patients are experiencing something that is life altering; however, in these points of darkness and desperation, one of our only options is to surrender to God and His strength that is our ultimate source of light in a dark time.
One of my favorite Christmas songs to blast in my car during this season is “Be Born in Me (Mary’s Song)”. It is a song from Mary’s perspective after being told from an angel that she will give birth to the Son of God. My favorite version is by Francesca Battistelli, and in the first verse, she sings,
“Everything inside me cries for order; Everything inside me wants to hide; Is this shadow an angel or a warrior?; If God is pleased with me, why am I so terrified?; Someone tell me I am only dreaming; Somehow help me see with Heaven’s eyes; And before my head agrees, my heart is on its knees”
(Be Born in Me (Mary’s Song))
This song does a beautiful job of depicting what Mary is going through during this time. After such life changing news, Mary’s life was in complete disarray as she tries to fathom what is being asked of her. Thinking about what Mary is going through during this time long ago is mind blowing. All of the sudden, she is presented by an angel that states she is going to give birth to a child, and not just any child, but the God of the world’s child that will rule the world. As she is still swallowing the fact that she is now pregnant after staying cautious and obedient to prevent from having a child, she also has to fathom that this child that she hadn’t even tried, asked, or thought was possible will be a perfect God. He will be more perfect than you, and she’s to carry and raise Him. The great I Am. I MEAN HOW FLIPPING CRAZY!
Mary’s whole life changed. Nowadays, it may seem as though her being chosen to carry Jesus was a great and awesome thing. I mean I would want to claim that I carried Jesus Christ in my belly. However, in those moments eons ago, Mary was not rejoicing over this calling. She was afraid and doubted how this whole situation was even possible. Her whole world changed in a moment. This also caused her to be shamed because who was going to believe that she was a pregnant virgin. Talk about an oxymoron. It was a dark time in that moment for Mary. She could not see the light in such a situation. Her mind flooded with darkness, doubt, and desperation.
In my profession as a nurse, I am around patients that are going through pretty dark times. A patient could come in with a simple symptom, and end up with a diagnosis that may mean surgery, rehab, and a whole lifestyle change. It is even hard to know what to say as a nurse, let alone be the one who is experiencing this change. How does Mary find the strength, and how can we encourage and promote such a strength in patients that are also flooded with darkness, doubt, and desperation?
I’ve always heard and have experienced myself that it is in our points of desperation when we realize that we need God the most. There is not much else to do in the desperation, but surrender to the fact that we cannot do everything else on our own strength. Mary was in the dark with thoughts of doubt and confusion, but God brought to light something beautiful from such a shocking life change. It is easy to think Mary’s example was easier because we know the end of the story; however, for Mary in that time, she did not know her ending. She was in the dark.
For Mary, she had doubts, but she placed her faith in God and used His strength to persevere. She clung to the light when all she saw was darkness. God was in the process of making something beautiful just as He is doing in this day and age, even though often times our darkness seems to overtake us. God is stronger than anything, anyone, any diagnosis, or any new life altering news that may hit us. He is the Grand Weaver working to weave together a beautiful, miracle story through the good and the bad. He is working to bring light to any dark situation. He proved this to us on the cross long ago. Jesus cried out for God to “take this cup from Him” and to allow for salvation without Him having to suffer and be murdered on the cross. There was no other way, but in the midst of the dark path ahead of Jesus, Jesus clung to God and His strength. God was bringing out something beautiful and was working to bring out light in a dark situation.
Just as Jesus says in John 8:12, “When Jesus spoke again to the people, he said, ‘I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life’” (John 8:12). Clinging to God is clinging to the light in the darkness. Clinging to God is clinging to our ultimate source of strength! In those moments where everything around seems to be dark, go to Jesus, who only works to bring LIGHT to the dark. He is our strength in the darkness, and the Light will guide us through every endeavor no matter the magnitude of the situation.
I pray that this week I can focus on the light. I pray that I can find strength in Jesus when all
that surrounds me is darkness. The light will bring joy and strength. The light will guide our paths. Surrender to the light and His strength because life is not meant to be gone through on our own strength.
The song “Be Born in Me (Mary’s song)” by Francesca Battistelli