***The following entries are fictional stories derived from the imaginary diary pages of the late Virgin Mary, as depicted in the synoptic gospels Matthew 1 and Luke 1-2. These are her stories.
Dear Diary, April, 3 BC
It has been a rainy day here in Nazareth. But oh, there is only radiance to be found within my heart. I cannot wait to share all that has happened today! Where shall I even begin? I had a long day at the temple yesterday- such a powerful teaching the Rabbi had been working on. I look forward to hearing from father what his understanding of the teaching might be. But in my fatigue, I confess that I delayed within my quarters far past sunrise this morning. And then suddenly, out of nowhere really, I heard the strangest sound.
“Greetings, you are highly favored! The LORD is with you.”
Of course, I immediately turned around to see who could possibly be talking to me. It was still early, and far too early for my parents to have let any respectable visitor pass.
It was then that I saw the brilliant myriad of light. It was so bright, terrifying in fact, but then… well, then it all changed.
The light, the radiance, the warmth could be seen emitting from something I couldn’t decipher at first. But then, I saw it. The glorious display of splendor was actually radiating from SOMEONE, an angel!
“AHHH!!!!!” Oh diary, if only you could have been there! My entire being wanted to scream but his awe-inspiring brilliance paralyzed my every intention. I finally managed to sit up, and as my eyes adjusted, there was no denying it. The indescribable brilliance that had consumed my atmosphere was an angel of the LORD!
What was it he said next? Oh yes, how could I ever forget.
“Do not be afraid, Mary; you have found favor with God. You will conceive and give birth to a son, and you are to call him Jesus. He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. The Lord God will give Him the throne of His father David, and He will reign over Jacob’s descendants forever; His kingdom will never end.”
There I was, in my housecoat, and he was telling me that I would be having a child! A son. The Son of the Most High! It was a moment I will never forget. I felt dizzy, nauseated even. Yet, the angel’s warmth captivated me within the stillness of his peace.
You will NOT believe what I asked him next.
“How will this be,” I inquired of my angelic friend, “Well, since I am a virgin and all?”
I said VIRGIN to an angel! Oh my goodness, my parents, our Rabbi – they are going to kill me! He played it so cool though and didn’t seem unnerved for even a moment. He remained calm and kindly continued with his joyous message from the LORD.
“The Holy Spirit will come on you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you. So the holy one to be born will be called the Son of God. Even Elizabeth your relative is going to have a child in her old age, and she who was said to be unable to conceive is in her sixth month. For no word from God will ever fail.”
Can you even believe it? Elizabeth is pregnant!! Jehovah Jireh, thank you! You truly are the God who provides! I know the words of my LORD are unfailing. I know that full well. My life was dedicated in the temple to you alone Father God. My life is yours, forever yours Yahweh.
Wow, what a day. Oh, and I did get the nerve to say something compelling to the angel. I asked him his name (Gabriel, such a great name) and then I said, “I am the Lord’s servant. May your word to me be fulfilled.”
Dear Diary, July, 3 BC
What a wonderful three months this has been with my sweet Elizabeth. And to think, both being pregnant at the same time. What a delight to see her womb swelling into the fullness of our Father’s plan. Oh, wow, to think I too will soon have such a belly. But I must return home. It is time. Time to talk to my parents, face to face. And Joseph, dear Joseph, the prince of my heart, what must he be thinking? I know you alone Jehovah can set his mind at ease. I will wait for you LORD. Nothing can diminish this joy within my soul. As I sang with Elizabeth, I will choose to keep singing,
“My soul glorifies the Lord
and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior,
for He has been mindful
of the humble state of His servant.
From now on all generations will call me blessed,
for the Mighty One has done great things for me—
holy is His name.
His mercy extends to those who fear Him,
from generation to generation.
He has performed mighty deeds with His arm;
He has scattered those who are proud in their inmost thoughts.
He has brought down rulers from their thrones
but has lifted up the humble.
He has filled the hungry with good things
but has sent the rich away empty.
He has helped His servant Israel,
remembering to be merciful
to Abraham and His descendants forever,
just as He promised our ancestors.”
Dear Diary, November, 3 BC
We had our first fight. I feel terrible, oh poor sweet Joseph. I really lost my temper tonight. The swollen feet, the heart burn, and this back pain – it has all gotten the best of me today. Oh diary, what shall I do?
Joseph says we have to go. Caesar Augusts has issued a decree for a census of the entire Roman world and we must go to Bethlehem. But can you even imagine – a journey, on a donkey, in THIS condition?! I know we must go. I know Joseph will care for us. Jehovah Jireh, I know you will provide. You always do. May my heart remain steady in the fullness of all that you are.
I’ll write more soon dear diary – for now I must go pack!
Dear Diary, December, 3 BC
He is here!! He is here!! Immanuel, Jesus, our son has arrived. Oh you should see him. The softest skin, the cutest tuft of hair. I love him. I love him so very much and I’ve only know him for a few hours.
I am so tired. But look at him sleep, oh, oh my precious baby!
Whew, what a day! We arrived within the town borders of Bethlehem and I told Joseph that something was happening. The pains in my back kept coming and I knew we needed to get ready. Joseph patiently went from guest house to guest house, but all the rooms were filled. A fellow traveler explained how the census had led to no vacancy anywhere. As Joseph and the traveler were conversing, my water burst! Oh diary, it was so scary. There was water everywhere and the pains across my waist got stronger and stronger. I kept saying to myself, “How did Elizabeth ever do this?!”
And then, he came. Joseph paid an innkeeper to share his manger and then he filled the corner with the cleanest straw he could find. I pushed, I screamed, Joseph prayed, Joseph screamed, and then HE WAS HERE!!
Just as Isaiah had prophesied, Hallelujah, Our Savior is born!
For to us a child is born,
to us a son is given,
and the government will be on his shoulders.
And He will be called
Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God,
Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.