A new article from Christianity Today‘s Mark Galli, keynote speaker at the upcoming 2011 Mockingbird Conference, has this typically scorching humdinger on the annunciation and what it says about God’s grace to us:

“This announcement to Mary comes completely out of the blue, as if it were an act of sheer grace. Indeed, an act of grace to Mary and to us. Before we could decide for or against God, before we could show him how religious we are, before we could ask forgiveness for our first sin, before we were the apple of our parents’ eyes, before the foundation of the world, God favored us. Not because he knew we would blossom into greatness. Not because he saw that we would become good Christians someday. Not even because we were humble enough to know we are not good Christians (which is really a kind of stealth pride!). No, we were favored when God knew well enough that we would fail to live up to our potential, that most days we would be miserable little disciples. Yes, in spite of the fact that we would be sad, fearful, doubting, anxious, and sinful people, he favored us.”