God could have chosen any way to carry out His will on earth; He chose the most non-intimidating way to bring us the hope of salvation. Through Mary, God gave us His Son. “You will conceive in your womb and bear a son and you shall name Him Jesus,” the Angel Gabriel said to Mary [Luke 1:31]. From that moment and the events that followed, we learn how to embrace Jesus.
With Mary, we see that embracing Jesus means opening our hearts and allowing Him to live within us and through us. At the visitation, Elizabeth could not see Jesus, but she knew her Savior was within Mary, the living tabernacle. “Blessed is the fruit of your womb,” Elizabeth said to Mary [Luke 1:42].
With Joseph, embracing Jesus means bringing Him into our family life and daily living. Jesus is our family and we are His family. With the shepherds, the Magi, Simeon and Anna, our embrace means beholding Jesus as our Savior and adoring Him as He should be adored. The first coming of Christ could have been in a blaze of glory, but in that blaze, how could we approach Him, be close to Him, and embrace Him?
Instead He came as we all do and what’s more, He came in the most humble way possible—born in a stable with a manger for His bed. The message is clear to us: Be Not Afraid. If we were meant to be afraid, would the shepherds have been sent to behold their Savior—a newborn infant lying in a manger? Would the Magi have traveled miles to pay homage to a baby? Would Simeon have held Jesus in his arms?
God wants all in search of salvation to find and embrace Jesus, who is the way, the truth, and the life. He has given us Mary, our Blessed Mother, to embrace us and help us draw close to her Son so that we may experience the joy of being united with our loving Savior.