Advent Day 4-One requirement for a Savior

My soul magnifies the Lord and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior (Luke 1:46-47)

People spend a lot of effort on do-it-yourself stuff, sometimes for the satisfaction of it, sometimes to save money.  Right now I am waiting for a do-it-yourself Christmas present that my husband is giving me.  It is a kit to make a camping quilt and sleeping pad.  The materials are supposed be awesomely light for those who don’t want to carry heavy packs on the trail.   I will receive the basic materials and directions, but then I will have to cut and sew it myself.

Ever since most of us were little kids we have wanted to do things ourselves whether it is to walk or tie our shoes or ride a bike.  We want to be independent and not need anyone to help us.  It’s part of growing up.  When as adults we relax and depend on others to do some things-like fill our coffee cups, clean our office, build our houses—our independence comes out in other ways.  In whatever areas we are supposed to be qualified and expert, we really do not want to ask for help.  We want to solve our own problems, get ourselves out of jams, be in control of difficult situations, not admit to any weaknesses, surround ourselves with success, pretend we’ll stay young forever. Some of us work hard not to need help. 

But here’s the dilemma.   In order to rejoice “in God my Savior” there is a requirement.  Yes, I know we talk about grace, but there is  no getting around this requirement.  By definition the requirement is that we have to have a need.   By definition, a savior rescues/heals/saves from a desperate need.  If you have no needs, then there is no necessity for a savior, is there?  On the other hand, anyone who has a great need which that person cannot do for themselves needs a savior.

“…my spirit rejoices in God my Savior.”

We can only guess at Mary’s personal needs.  Safety through her first childbirth.  A husband who wouldn’t reject a child not his own.  Food on the table.  Freedom from Rome’s oppresion on town’s streets.

In our “can do” and “do-it-yourself” world,  it would be wise to pause and name our needs–ours personally and ours globally.  The thunderous explosion of a school being bombed.  A tsunami crashing into a village.  An eviction notice.  The divorce papers.  The words of the doctor, “There is no more we can do.”  If we refuse to acknowledge our needs, we might not recognize the Savior saving.