ronniemcbrayer300 blackKENTUCKY (12/22/13) — For the longest time I thought a Hail Mary was a desperate, last-ditch throw at the end of a football game; a frantic attempt to win at the final second. Having been raised in one of the more contrary factions of Protestantism, you can’t blame me. I was taught to avoid Catholicism with the same amount of fierceness as avoiding card-playing and dancing. They were all equal spawns of the same Satan, or so I was instructed.

Well, all these years later, I haven’t picked up the habit of praying the Rosary, but I have come to appreciate it. And I understand why some believers find the Hail Mary, or Ave Maria, so gripping. Hail Mary, full of grace. Our Lord is with thee. Blessed art thou among women, and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus, comes straight from the Christmas text of Luke. It is Gabriel’s announcement that Mary will give birth to the Christ child, the Son of God.

There are plenty of divine births in religious literature. God (or the gods) comes down from heaven, assumes physical form, has intercourse with some fair maiden, and the resulting pregnancy is a mix of the human and divine demigods we call them. This is a common narrative, and is especially true of the Greeks.

Greek mythology is filled with tales of classic heroes who claimed paternity from the gods, but were birthed by human mothers (Theseus, Perseus, and Heracles to name a few). In most cases the divine father is Zeus who was nothing short of a cosmic philanderer with children scattered all over the Mediterranean and Mount Olympus.

This is not the nature of Mary’s pregnancy. What happens with her is unique in literature and in religion. That Gods spirit would come upon her reminiscent of Gods Spirit moving across the waters in the primal act of creation is a Jewish concept with its own flavor. And it has given Christianity the virgin birth.

Yet, Luke puts little emphasis on Mary’s celibacy, hardly any at all. Luke’s emphasis is on Mary’s compliance to Gods will. Mary’s response to her miraculous motherhood is profound; it is an act of complete surrender, as she says to Gabriel, I am Gods slave. Let it be done to me according to your word. Let it be. Now, where have we heard those words before?

The song “Let it Be” might be Paul McCartney’s finest work. He wrote at a difficult time: The Beatles were on the skids, individually they were suffering from their success, and Paul was a mess. He was lost, drunk, and confused. He began to feel this wrenching misery, longing for the comfort of his mother her name was Mary who had died when he was fourteen.

It was during this time that Paul’s mother came to him in a dream, he says. And she said to him, most supportive, Paul, let it be. McCartney awoke, went to the piano, and wrote the now classic song:

“When I find myself in times of trouble,
Mother Mary comes to me;
Speaking words of wisdom, let it be
There will be an answer, let it be.”

When Mary the mother of Jesus, not the mother of Paul said, Let it be, she wasn’t despairing of life. She was willingly receiving the way of God for her life. She was admitting that her designs for living would be set aside so that Gods design for her life would come to fruition in and through her.

Hers, like Paul’s, was a song of surrender, not of apathy or hopelessness. It was a song of submission to a higher and better way. Now, this sounds like losing, like we are giving up, but we lose nothing. We gain everything.

By accepting how the world actually is, accepting who we really are, and accepting what God wants for us, we move forward with peace. We collapse into the strength and will of the Almighty. Let it be. To confess such a thing is to indeed be full of grace.

Ronnie McBrayer is a syndicated columnist, pastor, and author. His newest book is The Gospel According to Waffle House. You can read more at www.ronniemcbrayer.me.

Disclaimer: The content supplied by columnists and letters to the Editor on this site does not in any way, shape or form, implied or otherwise, necessarily express or suggest endorsement or support of any of such content, statement, or opinions therein. SurfKY News does not necessarily adhere to or endorse content provided by outside non-staff sources.

e-max.it: your social media marketing partner

LIKE SurfKY on Facebook - Click here to LIKE us now.

© Copyright 2015 SurfKY News Group, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, or rewritten without permission. SurfKY News encourages you to share this story on social media.

Posted on 2/2/14
3/13 - 16
1 DOW 17,751.39
+121.12 (0.69%)    
2 S&P 2,108.57
+15.32 (0.73%)    
3 NASDAQ 5,111.73
+22.53 (0.44%)    
3/13 - 16

Most Read This Week

July 23, 2015 14757

UPDATE: Family Confirms Body of Missing Teen…

by Shawn Freels, SurfKY News
July 27, 2015 5207

Death of Central City Man in Dawson Springs Under…

by SurfKY News
July 22, 2015 4451

No. 9 Steakhouse Suffers Fire; Owners Vow to…

by Doreen Dennis, SurfKY News
July 23, 2015 4413

Woman Accused of Striking Juvenile with Metal Belt

by SurfKY News
July 27, 2015 3651

School System Announces Free Lunch/Breakfast at…

by SurfKY News

Most Read This Month

July 02, 2015 19525

Emergency Response Team on Scene of Standoff on…

by Doreen Dennis, SurfKY News
July 17, 2015 15672

Muhlenberg Most Wanted - Top 10

by SurfKY News

Stories Trending Now

July 28, 2015 2049

Hanson Youth Wins Soap Box Derby World…

by Tammy Holloway, SurfKY News
July 28, 2015 1875

Heavy Rains, Two Wrecks Impede WKP Travel

by Doreen Dennis, SurfKY News
July 29, 2015 1626

Miss Hopkins County Fair 2015 Chosen

by Tammy Holloway, SurfKY News
July 28, 2015 1547

Hopkins County Grand Jury Indictments

by SurfKY News
July 28, 2015 1329

Bud's Gun Shop to Re-Open Uncle Lee's

by SurfKY News
July 29, 2015 1208

Crime Stoppers Top Most Wanted - July 29, 2015

by SurfKY News
July 28, 2015 1207

Hopkins County Misdemeanor Indictments

by SurfKY News
July 28, 2015 1149

Madisonville Police Arrest Reports Released -…

by SurfKY News
July 28, 2015 1084

Hopkins County Sheriff's Reports Released

by SurfKY News
July 29, 2015 850

PPD Warns Public: Beware of Facebook Scam

by SurfKY News