But Mary treasured up all these things, pondering them in her heart.
(Luke 2:19, ESV)
There is no season of the year more festive, significant, and memorable than Christmas. The colors, the sounds, the family gatherings, the special meals, and the excitement of children and grandchildren make for happy memories. (In our house we have a special December calendar.) Secrets abound, touched by affection, only to be unwrapped on Christmas morning. For us, there are other memories as well that fill our minds—the things we unwrap, the gifts we give, and the joy we experience in giving are symbols of the greatest of all gifts, the Lord Jesus Christ.
The mystery of deity-in-flesh-among-us is as incomparable as it is incomprehensibly true. It is something that has captured our imagination, filling us with delight and appreciation. Mary is a great illustration, and model, in this regard for us. She was likely aroused from sleep by a group of shepherds who, somewhat perplexed, came to see her newborn. They came declaring that the heavens had been rent with an angelic announcement of a child. It was not an ordinary child. They said the angels told them the one they had come to see was the Promised One, the Messiah, the Christ, the one who would redeem His people, the Lord, the Master. They called the message “good news,” and surely it was—and still is and far more!
Mary’s reaction in Luke 2:19 is worthy of reflection. The word “treasured” means keeping something of value within herself, while the word “pondering” conveys the idea of comparing things one with another, contemplating. The words together suggest that Mary thought often on the words that the shepherds brought to her—such words as “Savior,” “the Christ,” “Lord,” “good news,” and “for all the people”—all the while clinging affectionately to the child in her arms.
My challenge to all at this season is that we would pause often to follow the example of Mary!