What if things had gone like this with Mary…

In the sixth month of Elizabeth’s pregnancy, God sent the angel Gabriel to Nazareth, a town in Galilee, to a virgin pledged to be married to a man named Joseph, a descendant of David. The virgin’s name was Mary. The angel went to her and said, ‘Greetings, you who are highly favoured! The Lord is with you.’
Mary was greatly troubled at his words and wondered what kind of greeting this might be. But the angel said to her, “Do not be afraid, Mary; you have found favour with God. You will conceive and give birth to a son, and you are to call him Jesus. He will be great and will be called the son of the Most High God.’
And lo, Mary’s jaw did drop a long way, and she said, ‘Er… have you got the right house?’
And lo, though she was highly favoured her knees did an awful lot of knocking. And she thought about what her family would think about this, and what they might imagine she’d been up to, and what her neighbours might say about the local men she had befriended, and what Joseph would do when he found out, and how her reputation and plans for a happy married life would be forever in tatters. Folk would never forget about the surprise baby, and of course they would be falling over themselves to gossip about this ‘miracle’.
So Mary said, ‘You’re asking a lot Gabe, why not go and see my cousin, she’s already married and would fit the bill perfectly.’
And Gabriel said, ‘I’m ahead of you. She’s having a baby too.’
And Mary stared out of the window and wondered what on earth was happening and whether her yes would be yes or her no would be no. And Gabriel waited patiently, trying not to drum his fingers.

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