Something we don’t often realize is how Advent coincides with the final weeks of Mary’s pregnancy. Perhaps you have personally experienced being pregnant. Maybe some important women in your life have been pregnant. Your mother certainly has been.Of course, pregnancy is a time filled with ups and downs, highs and lows. It can be a physical and emotional rollercoaster. And yet this is precisely how God himself chose to enter into our world. For each one of us, life begins by being carried in our mother’s womb. And the same was true for Jesus. This means that Mary understands and can identify with every pregnant woman. Just as Jesus identifies with each child in the womb.Imagine how Mary must have felt during her pregnancy, as she carried her first child, her only child. On one hand, this pregnancy was unlike any other. On the other hand, it followed the ordinary trajectory of any human pregnancy. There must have been moments of wonder, of joy and awe. At the same time, there must have been times of trepidation, fear, anxiety, worry, and uncertainty about the future.The presence of Jesus in our lives doesn’t necessarily make the path smooth or straightforward. And yet, looking at Mary bearing Jesus in her womb, we catch a glimpse of what all of us are called to. You and me, male or female, we are all called to bear Jesus in us. To let him grow and live within us. To carry him to others, as Mary did with her cousin Elizabeth, sharing the joy of Jesus from deep within her. Mary let Jesus take flesh in her.Two thousand years later, Jesus wants to take flesh in our lives. He wants our hearts to bear His love to others. He wants us to be beacons of Him as Mary was. Jesus wants to fill us, in order to come ever anew into our world.