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“But Mary kept all these things, and pondered them in her heart.”  Luke 2:19

This has always been one of my very favorite verses in Scripture.   I love thinking of how Mary must have kept everything hidden in her heart, and thought it all over as she went about her life;  I love that she went to her cousin Elizabeth, and the two women talked about what God had spoken to them.   To have God speak about what is being birthed in you, and keeping it to yourself, not necessarily out of fear of what others will think, or say, but to hold it as precious, as though keeping a trust.

Paul Wagner said once that “Blessed art thou among women” comes with a price.  We forget that, in our almost flippant ‘blessed and highly favored’ church culture.  We forget the price.  One of the verses that meant so much to me several years ago, when I was going through a time of tremendous pressure, was Revelation 12:6:  “And the woman fled into the wilderness, where she had a place prepared by God”  and again in verse 14:   “And to the woman were given two wings of a great eagle, that she might fly into the wilderness, into her place, where she is nourished for a time, and times, and half a time, from the face of the servant.”    These verses refer to Israel in the time of the tribulation to come, but they held, and still hold, a very personal meaning for me.   So much of this journey has been about becoming aware that God has planted the seed of something within my life, that “Behold, I will do  a new thing; now it shall spring forth; shall ye not know it?  I will even make a way in the wilderness, and rivers in the desert.”  (Isaiah 43:19)  That place of rest and nourishment has been, for me, the Word of God.  It has been my protection and stability in times of great stress and confusion.  And the enemy stands ready to devour that which God is bringing forth, BUT  “They overcame him by the blood of the Lamb, and the Word of their testimony.”   And what a testimony it is, when that which is formed in the spiritual womb, so to speak, finally comes into manifestation in the visible realm.  Not necessarily of any particular value to the world (what good is a baby, when the world needs a Savior?)  but someone who eventually becomes one God can use to heal, deliver, and restore.  And the world says  “Well, where on earth did you come from?”  The wilderness; the womb, the pit, the darkness.  And WE are the army that overcomes the world.

Well.  This certainly didn’t end the way I started.  But it’s a good word, nonetheless.