As a 19-year-old I first saw the image “Mary Consoling Eve” being used during Advent liturgy at my church. It immediately struck me as a beautiful image and I was drawn to the comfort and warmth brought by the truth it represented. However, the more I journey with God the more personal this image becomes.
I have always admired Mary. Given a task that in her context could bring intense emotional and physical pain, she never wavered or doubted, but entered the work ahead of her with joy and humility. In complete faith she said “be it unto me as you will”- these are not the words of a disconnected servant, but the overflow of a heart in communion with its creator. The obedience of Mary brought a humble Jesus to become like us, live among us and, in love, atone for our sin.
In my faith journey there have been seasons of joy and delight where glorifying God has been as easy as breathing; and there has also been seasons of hunger and struggle where I am far more in love with my comfort and my will than my Father. It has been in those seasons that God has pulled back the curtain of my heart to show me that any longing, or loneliness or dissatisfaction I am feeling is always a true longing after Him. What Eve was longing for in tasting the fruit was a longing that only her Father could provide. This is Satan’s trick, to make us think other things can fill the God-shaped hole in our hearts.
This advent season I find myself grieving with Eve. God has reminded me of my longing for him; He has shown me that I have been going to other dry wells when His is the only full one that satisfies. I’ve wept because I can see and feel this longing to be in perfect communion with Him, yet my sin continually gets in the way. I need a Saviour. This advent, this image has brought me hope and comfort. Right now, I see so much of Eve in me, but Mary reaches out to console me and connect me to my Saviour. She reminds me that this is temporary and a day is coming when that sin will be gone and I will finally have perfect communion with my Father. My longing will be satisfied.
This advent while we anticipate Christmas as a time to celebrate the coming of our Saviour in the past, we live out a small enactment of the greater picture. Knowing that Christ’s life and death has made it possible, the Christian’s heart is filled anticipation for Him to come in the future, create a new Heaven and Earth, and begin a time of perfect, unending communion with Him- the fulfillment of all desire.
A Prayer To Do The Father’s Will
Father, be it unto me as You will,
Your beloved, adopted child;
Handmade, valued, unique and known.
I am confident in your promises and your provision,
My hands and my heart are open to what you give, do and plan;
I am your willing one.
Father, I am often like Eve,
Who, hearing your will, believed hers to be better.
Instead, make me like Mary,
Who, hearing your will, did not fight or fear,
But in faith, joyfully and humbly submitted.
Teach me constant prayer,
The discipline of peace,
The choice for joy.
Give me faith and help my unbelief.
Let my faith not rest upon fleeting emotions,
But instead on the ability to choose you again and again,
Though my flesh fails.
I am yours,
Be it until me as You will.
Julia Bracewell is a fourth year Business – International Development student at Tyndale University in Toronto, Ontario. She is also co-founder of the Acacia Movement, a non-profit organization aiming to educate people about issues women in the Global South are facing and connect them to practical opportunities where they can work against these injustices. In her spare time she enjoys exploring the outdoors, writing music and meeting people.