In a casual conversation with the prophet Nathan, King David hints that he would like to build a temple for Yahweh, God of Israel. Nathan sees no harm in that, but later has a dream about the conversation—the kind of dream you don’t forget. He passes on the message to David that he is not to build a temple for God. God will build a house for David—he will never lack an heir to the throne.
Despite David’s failures as king and father, he is pronounced a good king because he listens to the prophets. He is not a proud king who decides for himself, but a humble one who consults wise advisors.
As with Abraham, Yahweh promises faithfulness to David. The only demand Yahweh seems to make is that David be attentive to the voice of God’s Spirit.
Over one thousand years later, we find Mary, a very young woman who has, like David, made a habit of listening to God.
When she receives a startling angelic visit and message. She simply asks a curious question, and is quietly reminded that nothing will be impossible with God. She renews her trust in God and offers up her life, her future, any hopes and dreams all up for whatever God has in store. “Here am I, the servant of the Lord; let it be with me according to your word.
She is willing to follow, even if uncertain about most of the details. True humility.
This final week (day!) of Advent our practice is humility. Courage to step aside from what we want and fear long enough to make room for the Spirit’s voice. Surely then, we will find that Christ has come–with love, and peace, and joy.