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"I am the servant of the Lord.

Luke 1:38

Let it be done to me as you say." I am struck by Mary’s Yes. Yes, despite not knowing the full extent (or really anything) of what would happen. Her Yes, despite a lack of a plan for how to accomplish the task at hand. Her open-handed, trust filled, expectant Yes, to allow God to work through her and in her. Her Yes that brought new life, hope, and salvation to the world.

In our own lifetime we get a million opportunities to do the same, in small and large ways. We get opportunities to bring new life physically to this world as parents, or when we speak out for life to bring that message to those who might be considering otherwise, or when we companion someone who may be depressed and feel that life is no longer worth living, or even as pet owners when we rescue animals that would otherwise be euthanized.

But we have even more opportunities to bring life to others in an emotional sense – hope - with our gifts of encouragement, support, affirmation, and love. We bring hope to the world with every loving word, kindness, and listening ear.

How this world needs hope! For so many, their lives have been reduced to what the culture says is important – success, recognition, power, money, being right - rather than what Jesus tells us brings life - love, peace and caring for one another. How many have their hope in these cultural prizes that do not last! They are often caught on a treadmill of working harder to pursue their unsatiable need for more and more, or escaping with alcohol, drugs, or pornography to fill the gap for what they are unable to attain.

Indeed, sharing our hope in the Lord is truly how we help bring salvation to the world, just like Mary. The world is so hungry for it, even if they do not know it. We bear Jesus in our beings and the trust and joy with which we live our lives. The witness of our lives, coupled with our words and our kind presence, have the capacity to share God’s message of hope with so many who are struggling, misguided, or unaware. We have a chance each day, each moment, just like Mary.

How is God calling you to bring life to this world? Will you say yes?

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