Through Mary’s Eyes

3 Dec

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What I didn’t expect while playing Mary for an afternoon was how children would respond to me. I knew they would come up and talk to my character, but I didn’t realize they would actually think I was her. Okay. I wasn’t totally clueless. I know children have a strong willing suspension of disbelief, but nonetheless it still took me by surprise when one little girl spontaneously hugged me and many little ones reached out to touch the infant in my arms. Seeing the sheer awe in their faces made me think of the real Jesus saying, “For the Kingdom of Heaven belongs to those who are like these children.”

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I could have stayed with the children all day and I saw how the baby in my arms was such a magnet for them. Was this what it was like for Mary? Did she know that her son was going to draw people in like this? As I interacted with the children I was deeply touched, but what I perceived on a deeper level was the world’s profound need for light. Watching cars go by and older kids caught up in decorating sugar cookies, I recognized our materialistic madness and disconnectedness juxtaposed with a quiet night long ago in Bethlehem when a star shone in the sky and deep peace descended upon the earth. I look to the sky.

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We talk about Mary most likely being overcome with fear and awe at the task that lay ahead of her. Perhaps she experienced these feelings initially, but I think once she was with child, a light guided her path. For today I was in a funk. I didn’t feel like suiting up and spending most of my day at church. Yet as soon as I arrived, I took on the role. My steps were light as I heard the familiar call, “Come, follow me.”

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