Radical RevLa Welcomes You

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Radical Mary: I know not a man

I know not a man
Talk about being a radical woman who could top Mary?
She was the ultimate. This young girl was presented with a task that I know many of us could never handle. She was told that she was going to be the mother of the King of Heaven.
What an honor? What a job? What pressure?
As a black girl I would say that this girl had "Heart" but as the Jewish girl that lives inside of me I would say that this girl had "Chutzpah"!!!
She had to have this inner strength because the job she was saying yes to could cause her to loose everything including her life. She would be a disgrace, the joke of the town and cause her family tremendous shame.
Not only that her husband could have her stoned if he chose to.
Yet this radical woman simply said yes to her calling without hesitation.
OK Ladies I think we should just stop right here and give this lady a standing ovation because
lets get real personally I think I'm a strong woman you know radical and all that but
really ladies when faced with stones being throw at me all at once from the whole town and all I could do was stand and take it......well that's just not going to happen. I would have to decline and take my chicken self back to the coop. So with great respect I thank this Radical Woman of God.

You see according to the ancient Jewish wedding customs Mary was married legally.
According to the wedding customs during those times Mary's father chose her husband. She did have the right to say yes or no. Once she said yes then they entered into the first part of the marriage agreement. The couple drank a cup of wine signed a paper and they were considered married. However they would not live together as man and wife at this time. If we were to compare this part of the marriage to what we do now it would be as if they were engaged except they were legally considered married and would have to have a divorce to end the relationship.
Mary would be left at her parents home until her husband finished building the home and obtaining the provisions etc. She would be looked at as a married virgin.
Mary clearly understood her current situation but once God's angel announced what she was asked to do
Mary never hesitated. She humbly accepted her task and never once doubted God.
She was a quiet powerhouse....ready to handle whatever her husband or the town had to throw at her including rocks if need be.
You see Joseph had the right to have her stone because she would be perceived as committing adultery. She would be looked at as soiled and being that they were legally married for all intense purposes she had stepped out of the covenant and became with child. Still knowing all of this she did not hesitate and said so be it. Who other than she could have that type of courage. Knowing that none of this would make sense to anyone? She still stood strong and took the job. Think about this. She had to face her parents, her husband, her town and her rabbi. She would be the talk of the town if she didn't get stoned first and she still said yes.
Could I have done this? Even with all of my faith I'm not sure that I would be that brave.
OK sidebar: I was really trying to be good but lets face it....its just not in me..so I'm going to get real
with all of my faith and yours and your sister and brother's faith I couldn't have done this at all!!!
What can I say confession is good for the soul...alright back to the lesson!!

Let us look at what Mary was being asked to do.
According to Luke 1 God sent the angel Gabriel to Nazareth a town in Galilee to a virgin who had been pledged
to Joseph a descendant of David. That virgin's name was Mary.
The angel greeted her and said these words
"you who are highly favored! The Lord is with you."
The scripture goes on to say that Mary was troubled at his words and wondered what kind of greeting was that. Gabriel went on to assure her not to be afraid.
Stop: visual aid...it is stated that the smallest angel is approx. 10 feet tall. Now we are talking about Gabriel here who was one of God's archangels so I'm assuming that Gabriel was three times as big as the smallest angel
(again all of this is my own opinion)
so he was expecting her to be afraid of him and he said to her do not be afraid.
However the picture that I want you ladies to see is that it was never stated that Mary showed any fear. She just listened. It wasn't his size or enormous presence it was his words his greeting. She was such a strong lady.
 Gabriel would never had to say to me "do not be afraid" I would have taken one look at this 30 foot man/angel and ran as fast as lighting or just passed out cold.

He went on to say "Do not be afraid, Mary, you have found favor with God. You will be with child and give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus. He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. The Lord God will give him the throne of his father David, and he will reign over the house of Jacob forever; his kingdom will never end."
Radical Mary never missed a beat she just looked at the real picture and stated the obvious.
"How will this be, since I am a virgin?" This girl was looking at the real deal. She knew that she had never had sex and lets face it that's the only way that we know how to get pregnant.
Gabriel answered with an explaination. He said"The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you. So the Holy One to be born will be called the Son of God. For nothing is impossible with God". Mary's entire life as she knew it was about to change and who really would believe that one night she went to bed a virgin and woke up pregnant without having sexual intercourse?

Our girl didn't skip a beat she quietly said "I am the Lord's servant. May it be to me as you have said". Then at that point the angel left her.
Mary's radical decision saved our lives. Mary's pure honest nature found favor from God. Mary set the tone for women like myself to just follow God in faith and never worry about what people would say about you. Now that was Mary's beginning with her Heavenly King child, but its more to this woman then just her beginnings. It has been said that its not how you begin but how you end. Let's see this woman who found favor from God that He made her the mother of the Holy One. Mary was one of the ladies that was at the foot of the cross when her innocent first born child was cruicified for our sins.
Sidebar visual: I was really trying to be good...but by now you know me...this must be said "Where were all the mighty disciples during this time? We see four women standing at the foot of the cross. Only John was there...good for you John you didn't punk out but what about the rest of the Jesus posse? The so called strong men..the leaders where were they? Only the ladies had heart/chutzpah. I'm not against men but really they need to get their act together and leave us alone. When we take a deep look at things they are not looking too good...enough said...back to the point..

As a mother I can not imagine standing and watching my child being tortured and killed for no reason. Just writing this now and just thinking about it I feel the tears coming.

According to John 19 it reads:
Near the cross of Jesus stood his mother, his mother's sister, and Mary the wife of Clopas, and Mary Magdalene..... When Jesus saw his mother there, and the disciple whom he loved standing nearby, he said to his mother, "Dear woman, here is your son", and to the disciple, "Here is your mother".
Jesus looked down and saw the women at his side. He saw his precious mother leading the pack. She was not going to abandon Him. His last act of sonship to her was to make sure she was being taken care of. So He stated that John was now her son and she was now his mother. From that time to her death she stayed with John as his mother and he her son.
You also must remember that by then Mary had other children who were by her husband Joseph but she chose to live with this disciple whom Jesus picked for her.

Mary ended her days as she began them. Choosing righteousness over what the world would think or say. She was commited to her job and stood in faith to the end of her task.
She knew that many did not believe her or her Son. She knew the road would be hard and she would be ridiculed. She never once second guest God or what was told to her. Nor did she care that what she said or belive made her appear crazy. I can see why she found favor in God's heart. How many of us would have done the same thing in the same way?

I thank Radical Mary for being our example. Whenever things get tough for me as a woman in a man's religious world I think back to what she might have gone through and I give thanks to God that we had her. Without her there would be no salvation for us.
So in closing I must state this....when you look at it Mary's only job was to have a baby. That baby changed the world as we know it. Remember ladies if God calls you to do a job it matters not how big it is or how small it seems. You never know when a small task for God will impact the world forever.
If you are called and say "yes" then the only thing that matters is starting right and ending right.


  1. LOVE this! I'm subscribing immediately!

  2. This is a series to be reckoned with! Love it. Please keep writing ;)

  3. 'Just follow God in faith and never worry about what people say'. Trust in Him. 'May it be as You say', that takes courage and really knowing that He is who He says He is.

    Thanks RevLa,

    Claire x

  4. Radical Mary...very nicely put. That said, many women are still stoned for adultery. Mary was lucky to have Joseph!

  5. Hello Revla! Thanks for the heads-up on your new post which is so inspiring as always. It reminds me of the second part of 'my' serenity prayer: "God - Grand me only the knowledge of your will for me and the power to carry that out." Sometimes, that's the only thing that stops me from turning down the wrong path out of Fear.