AN ABRUPT CHANGE OF PLANS
Solemnity of the Annunciation of the Lord
My dear encountered couples:
How do you feel when your plans are abruptly changed? You had your mind set on something, you were looking forward to it, and then without prior notice your plans are cancelled. You are being asked to do something you had not even thought of. I don’t know about you but it usually takes me time to get reoriented.It does happen in my life, though, and often. Sick calls come in, people stop by, my evening plans are changed … my going out of town is put on hold.
Let’s face it, we all have times when sickness or death change our plans drastically. Crisis after crisis … Today, for instance, the so called coronavirus is spreading rapidly in our country, having already affected thousands of people in China, Italy, and other parts of the world, causing sickness, death, and great impact on millions more people’s livelihood and daily life. It has definitely affected and altered our plans. In Mary’s case, however, it wasn’t either of those. It was life. God not only changed what Mary had planned for the day, the announcement from the angel Gabriel turned her entire life around. God had something he wanted Mary to do, which also involved Joseph’s life.
Is that maybe how we should look upon the surprises in our lives? God steps in and tells us, “No, no, I don’t want you to do that, this is what I would like you to do.” Maybe God doesn’t send us an angel, maybe he isn’t even directly involved in what is happening, but since nothing happens without at least God’s permission, then everything that happens is included in his overall providence. God foresees and takes the things that are surprises to us and makes them work out for our good and the good of others. All that is required is that we readjust as soon as we can and do our best with the new situation.
“The Holy Spirit will come upon you, Mary, and the power of the Most high will overshadow you; your holy offspring will be called Son of God.” Mary didn’t answer, “Uh, wait a minute Gab, I’ll have to think about that awhile. Joseph and I have other plans, you know.” No, Mary readjusted quickly and answered, “I am the maidservant of the Lord. Let it be done to me as you say.”
Shall we try to say that to God when our plans are unexpectedly changed?