Pregnant by surprise - surely no one in all of humanity was more surprised by the news than Mary. "Shadowed by God's Spirit" with words like that it was no wonder Gabriel had to say, "Be not afraid."
The roots of words contain interesting and sometimes enlightening information as to their eventual translation. Looking at Luke 1, the root words that are translated conceived are "seized in the belly". That's pregnancy, isn't it? All of one's being is contorted and transformed into growing a new human being. Nourishment produces cells that will differentiate into gray matter and bone. And when the first kick is felt, well, 'seized' is a good way to describe it.
We need not be pregnant to be seized by life, tho. Everyone who opens the door of the heart to God is seized by the ONE who creates life. The amazing event is that this Almighty One waits for our consent. Can we say, "Let it be with me.." Are we willing to be seized and transformed so much that we too can give birth to new life?
What would it mean for you to say yes to God so that all of your day, every day revolved around a new mission, birthing. Church would no longer be events on your calendar and prayer a new-year's resolution waiting to be fulfilled. God chooses US, not just Mary and awaits our consent to be seized by life. BE NOT AFRAID.