Have Yourself a {Mary} Little Christmas – Part 3

“Mary!” Jesus said.

She turned to him and exclaimed, “Teacher!”

John 20:16

Mary of Magdala.  Exorcised of demons and embraced by the Savior.

I suppose that is, in many ways, the story for each of us.  Whether our past includes the “biggies” or just a few “little” sins, we’ve all experienced the very real exchange old life for new.

As Paul wrote the church at Corinth,

What this means is that those who become Christians become new persons.  They are not the same anymore, for the old life is gone.  A new life has begun!  2 Corinthians 5:17 NLT

Mary had been radically transformed … death to life.   She understood the “life to the full” Jesus offered (John 10:10).   She loved Him, trusted Him, and stayed by His side through the most horrific event of her life – His crucifixion.   She was there when they took His maimed body down from the cross and wrapped it tenderly in linen and spices, gently placing Him in a borrowed tomb.

She mourned through that Sabbath … the 24 hours from sundown to sundown.   I imagine those were the longest minutes of her life.

And early that Sunday morning she rushed to the tomb.   Hurried to be where He was, stricken again with the reality of His death.   And when she arrived, He wasn’t there.   Yes, there were angels explaining to her.  Yes, she went and told the disciples what she found.  But, we find her back in the garden, still wandering and wondering.

A man, a gardener she supposed, spoke.  Through her tears, in her exhaustion, overcome with her grief, she begged the man to take her to the Savior.

Then He said her name, “Mary.”

Has He ever spoken your name? 

In the midst of sorrow or exhaustion, have you experienced the tender awareness that He knows you?   He sees You … and He is there.

Mary did what we must do … “She turned to Him.”

That’s the third key to a Mary Christmas … Turn to His voice.

Mary had already spoken to Jesus and yet she didn’t recognize Him.  She was so overcome by her circumstances that she failed to realize Christ was right before her.

That happens to me too.  Maybe it also happens to you?

When the Voice of Truth, of Peace, of Hope, of Life, whispers your name, do you turn?

Whether He speaks through music or a text from a friend, from a familiar verse of Scripture or the sloppy kisses of a child … when He whispers your name, will you turn to Him?

Will you choose to see His very real presence right in front of you all the time?  Will you learn to see the gifts of His grace and love in all the moments of your life?

What barriers do you find to hearing His voice?  What keeps you from turning?


Previous posts in this series:


Mary, the Mother of Jesus … Trusting God with your  plans

Mary of Bethany … Take time to dwell

Thanks for joining me as I’m contemmplating  a {Mary} Christmas. If you’d like, grab a button from the sidebar and place it on your website. We’ll use the hashtag #MaryChristmas to encourage one another. One last thing, if this post was encouraging to you, will you take a minute to share it with your friends on Facebook or Twitter? Thank you so much for joining me. I am praying you will

Mary Christmas www.terilynneunderwood.com

Read the Psalms this summer with Scripture Dig!


  1. In the past, successes and a sense of control kept me from turning –even from hearing. It was after I learned to give up my plans and identity to Him that I heard His voice often. Reminds me of the song that says, “You speak without sound, your love is so loud.” Enjoying your Mary Christmas series, Teri Lynne.
    Jeanette Edgar recently posted…When We Cannot Do What God AsksMy Profile

    • Control … I battle that one myself, Jeanette. So easy to think we can handle life on our own. But, yes, that sweet release of giving ourselves up to Him is what enables us to hear.

      Thank you for this reminder.

  2. If I give you any more love this week – some may begin to think I am verging on stalker.

    But I do love this girl.
    And – maybe I stalk a little!

  3. I understand Jeanette’s comments on control but I think my biggest issue is simple busy-ness. I am simply too busy bustling from one seemingly important task to another to even hear Him. To hear him I actually have to find time to be STILL. Not my greatest strength but I’m working on it.

  4. Terri, I hearted this. Has he called my name? He’s never used my name – but he’s called. Have I turned? I’ve turned towards him, I’ve looked away, never walked away, never will. What blocks me from him – keep me from him? That’s easy – sin. The more I follow his moral will, the more of him I get, the further from his will I wonder, the less the connection. I have felt the chill in my life of wandering down the path so far that I couldn’t hear his voice. The last thing I heard was “you can have that or you can have me”. Then I didn’t hear anymore – and I couldn’t stand the chill. That happened nearly 20 years ago – five years or so into my faith. I haven’t felt the chill since then. Sorry for the long comment. I’m feeling a little share-ish today. Thank you for this Teri – and God bless you.


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