This passage from the Gospel of Luke recounting Mary’s experience with the Angel Gabriel is especially relevant for students during this season of finals. During these trying few days, the Devil gives us many reasons to doubt ourselves and God’s plan. Personally there have been many times when I have felt so overwhelmed. It is so easy in these moments to question God and wonder why God gave us these hardships.
Mary herself questioned the Angel Gabriel in the midst of immense uncertainty, and was “greatly troubled” by what Gabriel’s visit could mean. Who was she to bear the Son of the Most High? What would this mean for her life, and how could she ever live up to the responsibility the Lord has placed on her, the one chosen to raise him who would rule over the house of Jacob forever? Despite these worries, the Angel Gabriel responds “Do not be afraid, Mary,” and proclaims that due to her purity and faith she has “found favor with God.” Gabriel quells her every fear, and because of her obedience, the Lord was able to enact miracles through her and further spread God's love.
When facing feelings of fear and self-doubt, we must follow Mary’s example and similarly trust in God with all our heart, and realize that “nothing [is] impossible for God.” Even for Elizabeth, “who was called barren,” the Lord worked miracles through her. Similarly, God can deliver us from any hardship. During this finals season when so many things are out of our control, we must remember that all we can do is make ourselves a more perfect vessel of God’s love and nothing else. Everything else will happen exactly according to God’s will, and just like Mary, we must have the strength to say with complete confidence: “May it be done to me according to your word.”