– enjoy a fresh blog post every Sunday during Advent
written by Baptist women of different ethnicities –
Sunday November 28
A Reversal of Power by Rev. Abby Davidson, Spring Garden Baptist Church, Toronto
I began a new pastoral role earlier this year. After my first Sunday preaching I had a mom reach out to me and share that her young daughter was intrigued by me. She loved watching me on the church livestream and said “Look mama, it’s a girl like me”. I don’t think I could have heard anything more encouraging that day. This young girl saw me, a bi-racial woman, in the pulpit and connected with me. It was not my words that impressed her but the fact that I am who God created me to be doing what God called me to do. It is often out of the mouth of babes that we hear truth and wisdom and this young girl reminded me how God works through us in unexpected ways.
The theme of God working through the unexpected weaves throughout Scripture, particularly as it relates to power. We learn that power belongs to the Lord as we see it stripped from unjust leaders and given to those who are unimpressive and unimportant. The prophet Micah spoke about the hope of a new world where current leaders who despise justice will be brought low as the just and merciful leader appointed by God arises. This leader will come from Bethlehem – a small and insignificant town, a place with no power or privilege.
We see this reversal of power once again in the angel’s proclamation to Mary. He addresses her, a young and unimportant girl as “favoured woman” and tells her that God is with her. God’s power is about to be displayed through her weakness, or through what the world perceives as her weakness. Upon hearing this message Mary is confused and disturbed.
I imagine you have felt confused and disturbed over the last year and a half. We have been made aware of the horrific legacy of residential schools in Canada. Perhaps you’ve had time to examine the spaces in which you work, serve or worship and have faced the reality that systemic racism is alive and well. We grieve with every injustice that comes to light and often it seems we are powerless to do anything about it.
And yet there is hope. The Advent season reminds us that our hope does not lie in political systems or in charismatic leaders but in the precious Word of God made flesh. Our hope is in Jesus who came without any worldly power to usher in the Kingdom of God – a Kingdom where justice and mercy reign and oppression is no more. Our participation in the Kingdom does not depend on our abilities or strengths but in our willingness to obey.
This Advent, God is inviting us into His redemptive activity of reversing power and privilege. What do you see as your weakness? Pray about how God will use that weakness to inspire others and further His Kingdom. Then Act. Consider how you might spend time this Advent season with those who the world sees as weak and without power.
Watch the video devotion for this week written and voiced by Victoria Mok, live magazine contributor, Mississauga Chinese Baptist Church. Find it here.
Then join us on Thu Dec 2nd @ 1 p.m. EST to share highlights from the devotional and video and to pray.