The Pondering Heart
I was reading about the birth of Jesus in Luke 2 recently and realized that I had made an assumption about Mary.
I don't know if it was made because of movies, or plays that I saw,
but I had always thought that when Mary had "pondered these things in her heart",
that she was pondering them after the angel came and told her that she would give birth to a Son whose name would be called Jesus.
It's funny how you can read something over and over and then all of a sudden you read it like you've read it for the first time.
I believe that is called revelation. It becomes a "wow" moment. I like those.
15 So it was, when the angels had gone away from them into heaven, that the shepherds said to one another, “Let us now go to Bethlehem and see this thing that has come to pass, which the Lord has made known to us.” 16 And they came with haste and found Mary and Joseph, and the Babe lying in a manger. 17 Now when they had seen Him, they made widely[a] known the saying which was told them concerning this Child. 18 And all those who heard it marveled at those things which were told them by the shepherds. 19 But Mary kept all these things and pondered them in her heart. 20 Then the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things that they had heard and seen, as it was told them.
Google actually has images for "pondering".
Merriam Webster defines ponder as:
1: to weigh in the mind : appraise <pondered their chances of success>
2: to think about : reflect on <pondered the events of the day>
The shepherds had just been visited by a sky full of angels while they were doing their usual task of caring for the sheep.
I've often wondered why God chose to tell these guys.
I think, as usual, God knows the heart.
Jesus was never accepted by the leaders of the synagogues, and wasn't even accepted in his own hometown.
These shepherds were so excited! And they told everyone!
Mary and Joseph must have been surprised when all of a sudden the stable was full of people wanting to see the baby.
Up until now her news of having a baby was not good news.
She was a young girl engaged to Joseph. Today we would call her an "unwed mother". She was a shame to her family. We would have thought the same thing of her had we known her.
But now so much excitement!!
I think maybe this was when Mary realized the magnitude of the gift in her arms.
Veiled in flesh the Godhead see
Hail the incarnate Deity
Pleased as man with man to dwell
Jesus, our Emmanuel
Hark! The herald angels sing
"Glory to the newborn King!"
God had chosen her to mother and nurture the Son of God. She would have been experiencing a lot of different emotions all at the same time.
For now, there was joy everywhere.
There would be many more days of joy and of sorrow.
In this busy season, may you take some time to ponder the gift that God is to you and how He would like you to share that Gift with others.