Did she really say that? Did she really mean it? I keep turning back to Luke 1:38, “And Mary said, ‘Behold, I am the handmaid of the Lord; let it be to me according to your word.’” I take a few minutes to present myself before God in silence. When my mind wanders, I return to the spirit of Mary’s words. How can my heart prepare him room?
Then it hits me.
Only as God’s handmaiden did Mary became the God-bearer.
I want to ask you: when did the New Covenant start? Where was the special place where God became man, “not by conversion of the Godhead into flesh, but by the taking of manhood up into God”? It all started in the womb of the virgin Mary. She is the genesis, the cradle, the fountainhead of Christ’s humanity. She is the place where, as John 1:14 says, “The Word became flesh and tabernacle among us, and we beheld his glory.” Mary gave herself—body and soul—to God: and as God’s handmaiden, Mary became the God-bearer.
Now, the incarnation is not like a game of Monopoly. We can’t pull out the board and arrange the pieces and do it all over again. But gentlemen, I want to suggest to you that Mary was just the beginning of what God wants to do in all of us—make us God’s handmaidens. You and me. People who, like Mary, can hear Christ and then say Yes to Christ. So it is that Jesus says in Luke 8:20, “My mother and brothers are those who hear the word of God and do it.”
St. Paul puts it in more muscular terms. He says he is “a slave for Christ” (Rom. 1:1). The way of manliness, for Paul, is “not by way of eye service, as men-pleasers, but as slaves of Christ,

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