Thirteen years old and pregnant.. sound like a Jeremy Kyle episode? In fact it’s the story of a mother, who brought the most precious child into this world. A child who became a man, a child who was already a saviour, a Lord who left an indellible mark in the hearts of creation…
Here’s Mary’s Story
I guess by now you already know most of my story; the angel, the stable, the shepherds, the wise men it all happened, I know it happened yet there are still times when I can’t believe it happened to me!
I was 13 the year my life changed. I’d been an adult for just a year and was engaged to Joseph. He’s the kindest most discerning loving man I’ve ever met and he was working hard to build a house for us at the time, one that not only I would like but also one that my father would approve of, little did he know we wouldn’t be returning.
Both Joseph and I had been brought up in the Jewish faith, we knew of the scriptures, we knew that the Messiah would be coming, admittedly I was thinking along the lines of rolls of thunder and chariots of gold but we knew that one day He would come. I
just didn’t expect Him to come during my life time or for Him to come as a baby and I definitely didn’t expect to find myself involved. I’ll never forget that night, the night the Angel came and told me what God’s plan for my life was, the joy in my heart as I chose to follow it, the feeling of life exploding inside of me; like I could feel the baby starting to grow the instant I agreed.
The emotions that followed were over whelming, the first coherent thought I remember having was ‘How do I tell Joseph?!’ Needless to say he was more than a little shocked, yet he seemed immediately more concerned that the divorce be carried out quietly so as to save me than he did about the fact that I was carrying a child and it obviously wasn’t his.
I guess he’s always been that kind of man. God however had different ideas and let Joseph know what was happening, he agreed to stand by me, that we would face this together as man and wife. Seeing the sacrifice he’d made, I felt bad about the need to go and visit my cousin Elizabeth, but the gossiping in town had got worse and she was the only other person in the world who had even a vague idea of how I was feeling.
God had, by his grace allowed her and Zacharias to conceive. When I arrived Elizabeth was glowing, even in her old age pregnancy suited her, I spent a wonderful three months with her and was sad to leave, but I was missing Joseph and knew that the time had come to return home. As it was I wasn’t back long before I had to leave again, this time with Joseph as a census had been called and we had to go to Bethlehem. It was there in a town where I knew no one, in a stable at the back of an inn that Jesus was born. It sounds idyllic I know, and as soon as I held him I guess I forgot about my surroundings but it looking back it wasn’t the ideal way to deliver a child.
Sitting there with Joseph watching Jesus sleep I started looking forward to settling down to life in the house Joseph had built for us, surrounded by friends and family, but then the visitors started arriving. It was the shepherds who first reminded me of just how special this little boy was, they had been told by angels that he was here and came from their fields to worship him.
Then after a few months the Maji came, they had travelled hundreds of miles just to see Jesus, they’d brought gifts and wisdom and through an Angel a warning. I thought that we’d been anonymous here that no one knew of what had happened but I was wrong, Herod had not only heard but he planned to kill my son, to kill God’s son! As we started life in exile I started to realise that this path I’d chosen to follow wasn’t going to be easy, as I write this we are in Egypt, I don’t know when or even if we’ll ever get to go home, I don’t know what difficulties are to come, I don’t know the rest of the plan but I do know that the life of this child is more important than anything.