May it be to me as you have said.” This is how Christmas began. This is what this celebration is about. People who choose to join the group of those that make thing happen in this world. People that adopt God’s character as the God who incarnated himself to transform an oppressing and senseless reality to a reality that is worth living with dignity.
The Birth of Jesus
In the sixth month, God sent the angel Gabriel to Nazareth, a town in Galilee, to a virgin pledged to be married to a man named Joseph, a descendant of David. The virgin’s name was Mary. The angel went to her and said, “Greetings, you who are highly favored! The Lord is with you.” Mary was greatly troubled at his words and wondered what kind of greeting this might be. But the angel said to her, “Do not be afraid, Mary, you have found favor with God. You will be with child and give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name 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 the house of Jacob forever; his kingdom will never end.” “How will this be,” Mary asked the angel, “since I am a virgin?” The angel answered, “The Holy Spirit will come upon 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 barren is in her sixth month. For nothing is impossible with God.” “I am the Lord’s servant,” Mary answered. “May it be to me as you have said.” Then the angel left her.
Luke 1: 26-38
A few months ago, our country was moved by alarming news: the missing grandson of Estela Carlotto, founder of the organization “Abuelas de Plaza de Mayo”, was found alive after 30 years.
During the years of the military dictatorship and while hundreds of people went missing, this organization fought against a tremendous structure of power by publicly exposing their claim to find their grandchildren who were born in captivity. They did not stop. These grandmothers were committed to what they believed belonged to them. Tireless. Believing. Trusting. Activating their faith. Desiring to be able to embrace their heritage. Finally after 30 years, when life seemed to slip away, Estela, the president of this organization, received her reward. Her grandson appeared, and all of her tears of pain became tears of joy.
From this story, I would like to present the idea that in the world there are three types of people. Those that do not know what is happening either out of ignorance or just because they choose not to know. Those that watch from the sidelines, not getting involved due to resignation or lack of commitment. And, finally, those that make things happen. These are the people that change realities, or provoke changes that are needed. They are the ones that do not conform to inaction or becoming silent witnesses. Intrepid. Brave. Decisive. They challenge themselves to change our world. Estela, and the other “Plaza de Mayo” grandmothers, belong to this last type of people. And, so did Mary.
Mary, Jesus’ mother, had to make a decision when faced with the angel’s announcement. She had to decide to which rank of people she wanted to belong – to those that do not know, to the spectators, or to the ones that make things happen.
“May it be to me as you have said.”
Her response made her part of God’s plan to save this world. From that moment on, her life was not the same. She became a transformer of realities. A person who changes things. Her womb and her life became vessels in which the Living God dwelt.
Mary wanted to be part of the wonderful work of salvation, and accepted the angel’s invitation. It was not easy, of course. It demanded effort, surrender and rejection. It required bravery, deep trust, and acceptance that the child she was carrying was not hers. Her commitment was not just to deliver the child but also to raise, educate, and support him so that what God had planned would be fulfilled . “He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High.”
That is how Christmas began. That is what this celebration is about. People who choose to join the group of those that make thing happen in this world. People that adopt God’s character as the God who incarnated himself to transform an oppressing and senseless reality to a reality that is worth living with dignity.
This is how Christmas begins. This is why it is a celebration. Since Jesus came to this world, heavenly things continue to happen in the lives of those that believe it is possible to commit to a better and fuller life. Because there are people that do not resign to loosing what God has given them. They want to be part of a powerful transformation. People that honor values. People with principles. People of faith. People that have hope. People of excellence. People that are set on doing the right thing. People that generate processes of salvation. People of vision. Productive people. Prosperous people. People that are willing to say to God, “May it be to me as you have said.”
BAICA has this commitment – to form each student with a world transforming view of life, intending that they would not belong to those that do not know what is happening or that do not get involved, but of those that have a clear understanding that their part in this world is to transform it. Causing the world to be different. Dignifying it.
This is why we teach Kingdom values and principles revealed in the Bible. We believe that if, at this point in their lives, our students can say to God, “May it be to me as you have said,” that in and of itself will cause them to belong to the group of those that, like Mary, are powerful instruments to make this world a different one.
At BAICA, Christmas take the form of genuine hope because we assume our role as people who do God’s work in our educational community, seeking to then impact our world.
We wish all of you a Merry Christmas.
Let’s work together to make God’s “things” happen in our world!
Pastor Gustavo Schneir
Baptist Church of San Isidro