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Purity Girls
Purity 101

The Christmas Story: Mary's Mysterious Visitor
Luke 1:26-56

     Long ago, there lived a young woman named Mary. Some might have said she was empty, because she didn't have many nice things, but she was full of the joy that comes from a clear conscience and a heart full of love. Mary was engaged to a strong, yet tender man whose name was Joseph.
     Mary, just like you or me, was not perfect. However, she tried to live a life of purity before God to the best of her ability. Because of that, she did not have to fear getting caught, and she did not have to deal with the shame that comes with sin. She had a good reputation with all who knew her.
     One day, all that changed for Mary when she received a mysterious visitor who walked right into Mary's house and greeted her as though he knew her.
     He said something like this, "Hello, dear lady. Because of your closeness to God you are much loved and blessed above all other women."
     Naturally, Mary was a bit worried. Wouldn't you be? She probably wondered if this strange guy was a prophet or an axe murderer.
     But he continued, "Don't be afraid, Mary. As you know, your people have long been waiting for a Saviour. God sent me to tell you that the Saviour will soon be born, and you have been chosen out of all the women in the world to be His mother. Your baby will be the King of all eternity!"
     Somehow, Mary sensed that this heavenly visitor and his message were genuine. However, his words were so unusual, so unexpected, that she could hardly make sense of them.
     She was going to have a baby? How could that be? Mary was innocent, but she knew that babies did not happen without physical intimacy with a man, and Mary had kept herself physically pure.
     She asked the angel to explain how this could happen, and he told her that her baby would be conceived unlike any other. "Your baby will not be the son of Joseph or any other man. He will be the Son of God, conceived through the Holy Ghost and the power of God," he said.
     Perhaps Mary looked confused, even incredulous, because the angel continued, "Mary, with God, nothing is impossible!"
     The angel gave Mary some proof that what he said

 

was true. "You know that your cousin Elisabeth was told long ago that she was unable to have children, and she is now too old to become pregnant, but, Mary, Elisabeth is now six months pregnant."
     Mary had not dreamed it was possible for Elisabeth to have a baby this late in life, and she knew how her cousin had longed to get pregnant for years without success. If Elisabeth was pregnant, Mary knew what the stranger told her would surely come true, so she'd better get ready.
     "I'll willingly submit to whatever will God has for my life," she told the angel. Then he left, and Mary practically ran to the city where her cousin lived.
     It was true! Mary's cousin Elizabeth was experiencing a miraculous pregnancy as well! Together, they praised God for working a miracle in their lives, and they prepared themselves for the task God had in store for them.
     Mary yielded to God's will, although His will was far different than what she had planned for her life. Being chosen by God was a special honor, but at the time no one believed her story, so she was the topic of scandal and shame. Instead of complaining that she couldn't do what she wanted, Mary allowed God to rearrange her plans and then praised Him for counting her worthy to be a part of His greater plan.
     How do we compare to Mary? Are we living lives of purity, so that God can fulfill the plan He has for us?
     As He transforms us, do we complain or praise Him? Are we more worried that our classmates may find us odd, or more thankful that God cares enough about us to change us into something more beautiful and perfect?
     The Bible says, "But in a great house there are not only vessels of gold and of silver, but also of wood and of earth; and some to honour, and some to dishonour. If a man therefore purge himself…he shall be a vessel unto honour, sanctified, and meet for the master's use, and prepared unto every good work. Flee also youthful lusts: but follow righteousness, faith, charity, peace, with them that call on the Lord out of a pure heart." (II Timothy 2:20-22)
     Let's try to be more like Mary: prepared for God's use, willing to serve Him, and trusting God to work out the details. Mary was a true "purity girl." Are you?

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