By Walter Wangerin Jr.
Read Luke 1:26–38.
The Canaanites tell this disturbing folktale: if a jealous angel should appear to a young woman on the night of her betrothal, beware! It’s a sign that the she-demon will kill the man she’s soon to marry.
Could this be one of the reasons why Gabriel’s appearance to Mary troubles her? Gabriel (his name means “God is my hero”) is quick to allay her fears: “Hush, child. Mary, let your heart be calm. I’ve come with good news.” Ah, then he hasn’t come to harm the man she loves. The angel Gabriel says, “God told me to tell you that he has chosen you above all other women. In nine months you will bear a healthy and holy baby boy.”
Mary can be calm. But Mary can also be bold and outspoken. “You’re wrong, sir. I’m a virgin. I have not and will not lie with any man till Joseph and I are married.”
Gabriel says, “A virgin you are, and a virgin you will be, even to the time you’ve delivered the babe. Nothing is impossible with God. Tonight the Holy Spirit will plant the seed in your womb, and your infant will be called the Son of the Most High God. He will reign, as did his ancestor King David reign, over Israel. But your boy’s kingdom will last forever.”
Straightway the Virgin Mary’s boldness of speech becomes the boldness of faith: “I will be the handmaiden of the Lord.”
Likewise, let the women of our age be the Lord’s maidservants, and the men his menservants, and let us serve as Mary served—obediently.
I am weak, but you are mighty.
My faith is fragile, but your faithfulness is powerful.
Help me, my Lord, to believe in your promises,
for they shall be fulfilled.
Taken from Acts of the Almighty: Meditations on the Story of God for Every Day of the Year by Walter Wangerin Jr. Click here to learn more about this title.
Acts of the Almighty by beloved, National Book Award-winning author Walter Wangerin Jr. carries us sequentially through the sweep of the Bible’s story in daily devotional readings.
One of the greatest modern writers on faith and spirituality, Walter Wangerin Jr. is the author of more than forty books — including The Book of God and The Book of the Dun Cow — and the recipient of the National Book Award. In Acts of the Almighty, Wangerin’s deep biblical insight and poetic heart help us explore how the Bible fits together into one grand story.
This 365-day devotional invites us to understand more fully God’s redeeming works through five sections: Genesis and Exodus, David and Solomon, the prophets, the life of Christ, and the birth of the Church. The short, daily readings capture Wangerin’s signature voice as well as his profound wisdom. Each dated entry contains a biblical passage that focuses on a single moment from the Bible’s epic story, a brief meditation from Wangerin, and a prayer.
Sink deep into this unique devotional that takes you through the Bible in one year. Acts of the Almighty offers a beautiful opportunity to read the Bible’s expansive and arresting story in a brand-new way.
Walter Wangerin Jr. is widely recognized as one of the most gifted writers writing today on the issues of faith and spirituality. Known for his bestselling The Book of the Dun Cow, Wangerin’s writing voice is immediately recognizable, and his fans number in the millions. The author of over forty books including The Book of God, Wangerin has won the National Book Award and The New York Times Best Children’s Book of the Year Award. He lives in Valparaiso, Indiana, where he is Senior Research Professor at Valparaiso University.
Want more? Sign up for the Zondervan Books Weekly and receive the PDF eBook Daily Power: The First 31 Days by Craig Groeschel, taken from Craig’s devotional Daily Power: 365 Days of Fuel for Your Soul.
With the Zondervan Books weekly email newsletter, you’ll enjoy helpful articles by inspiring Zondervan authors, sample new and upcoming books, and more. With your subscription, be prepared to find more incredible books for your reading list and/or audiobooks for your listening list.