A Prayer of Love: December 19
Fourth Sunday in Advent: A Reflection on Love
“My soul magnifies the Lord,–Luke 1:46-49
and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior,
for God has looked with favour on the lowliness of God’s servant.
Surely, from now on, all generations will call me blessed;
for the Mighty One has done great things for me,
and holy is God’s name.”
Mary absolutely knew.
In the way of angels and messages, in the bodily awareness of growing and the possibility of liberation made manifest in the culture of family, and in the proclamation of love incarnate, Mary knew.
There is a kind of awe in pregnancy, a wondering of “What will this child bring?” “Who will they be?” “How can they hold the world we live in now and carry it further along God’s hope?”
You see, as I write this, I am eight months pregnant. A child moves in my womb, kicking my rib and demanding attention from within. It’s a special Advent this year, knowing something like Mary, that my body is not entirely my own, and yes–choosing–to bring forth another soul into the world.
How can one bring a child into a world called and experienced as broken by so many?
How can we bring another human into this land of oppression, and inequity, and despair, among systems that try over and over to kill so many people?
How can we choose love, life, family, when those choices are not offered in hope and peace and consent in many places?
Mary certainly knew.
Amidst the stigma of her pregnancy, the lack of Y chromosome in the creation, and the creativity of Being within her, she knew the potential of her child to change the world and redefine love.
She chose to stay with this growing being and carry Them to term, as just a teenager herself.
She chose to witness to the words of the Angels in message, to celebrate with her cousin in shared experience, and to offer a place of “home” to One who is to become Home for so many others.
Part of my choosing and knowing, too, is knowing that bringing about the world that God wants for all of us will take raising radial babies in the Way of Mary’s child.
It will take a culture of liberation in the home, echoing to the community, enacted in how we each treat ourselves and our neighbors, bringing us closer to a world where ALL are free.
It is something we teach, generation to generation, choosing to impart the faith, and values, and hopes, and love of our ancestors, for those who will come thereafter, long after we pass.
Mary knew what was possible for her child.
“The moment we choose to love, we begin to move against domination, against oppression. The moment we choose to love we begin to move towards freedom, to act in ways that liberate ourselves and others. That action is the testimony of love as the practice of freedom.” - bell hooks
*Note–hooks’ name is intentionally not capitalized.
Let us pray:
Holy of holies-
Fill us with your Love.
From the wombs that birthed each one of us into the world, and the channels of hope that we embody as individuals, midwifing your realm on earth, as it is in Heaven:
Let love be the guiding force for our relationship to our bodies, our selves, our neighbors, our world.
Let love flow forth in reckless abundance, and let it begin with me. Amen.
Written by Rev. Dr. Chris S. Davies, team leader, Faith Education, Innovation, and Formation
This prayer is part of a series of daily reflections for Advent 2021.
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