Martha: Hi Mary.
Mary: Hi Martha, how’s it going?
Martha: Oh you know, the usual, busy busy busy.
Mary: I hope you’re factoring in some breathing space.
Martha: Well you know me, plenty to do. Lots of plans.
Mary: Oh yes. Plans.
Martha: What do you mean?
Mary: Oh I learnt a long time ago. You know what they say… we make our plans but God has the last word.
Martha: What are you talking about?
Mary: Oh, it’s so long ago now… but I had such grand plans, was going to have a big wedding, all the village there, and then at some point ease into having babies and all that.
Mary: You know… I met an angel and boom! Chaos. Everything on its head. Plans all over the place, like bits of gloopy food when you’re trying to feed a toddler.
Martha: Did you not panic?
Mary: Of course. That wasn’t what I planned at all. Who wouldn’t have done? I ran away, went to see my cousin, wanted to hide. I mean, I agreed with everything when the angel was standing there in my doorway, all bright lights and encouraging smiles, but it wasn’t long after the fears crept up on me. What would people think? What would they say and do? And what about all those precious plans? Then I heard that my cousin Liz was pregnant too. Astonishingly. At her age! So I ran to her for help.
Martha: And was she a help?
Mary: Oh yes. The moment she saw me she knew. I don’t know how. But she confirmed everything the angel had said. Gosh I still get goose bumps when I talk about it. Look at my arm.
Martha: It frightens me to not be in control.
Mary: It frightens me too. Still! I just try and take a day at a time. Now my boy’s grown up and got famous I never know what each day will bring. I hear all kinds of stories about what he’s up to, I just have to trust and hold on and pray like mad.
Martha: Plans aren’t a bad thing though are they? Surely?
Mary: Of course not. I just try and hold onto them lightly. You know, expect the unexpected and all that.
Martha: I wish I could be like you.
Mary: No! Be like you. Be what you are. Don’t be fooled. I can tell this story calmly right now, but if I go home and an angel walks in again… boom! Like a toddler’s lunch all over the walls again! Now, talking of plans… did you make that delicious cake and a cuppa for me?