So often I take for granted the gift of the Blessed Virgin, mother of the most high God. I love my birth mother and hold her up in high esteem. I accepted who she was without knowing everything about her; she wasn’t perfect, as none of us can be. But I ask God to bless her with eternal peace. Yet I wonder why it is many of us fail to call upon this holy woman of God who said yes as our heavenly Mother; Mary, the first temple of Christ Jesus, Mary, Untier of Knots, Mary Most Holy Virgin, Mary, Sorrowful Mother, Mary, Immaculate Mother. All these names plus more, given because of the elevation to being our Mediatrix; the one who pours down graces upon those who come to her for guidance in their journey to her Son.
I look at the many pictures I have of Mary in and around my house. She is a reminder for me to pray – to offer up and sacrifice for others when I can. She shows me it is simply about loving. She loved a pregnancy she did not understand. She loved a man named Joseph whom she would marry but never know in a physical embrace. She placed herself and this child in his care, trusting implicitly. Her love did not question but followed the directions given by the Holy Spirit. She must have been afraid; yet she did not lose hope and faith that she was being led and that God the Father would not stop leading her and Joseph. When she lost Joseph and faced her Son on the cross, once again she had to find the trust and faith that brought him into this world and let Him go from it.
In this crazy covid-19 country/world of ours; with our nation about to have a life-changing election, we can lose hope and faith; we can become frustrated with the hate heard and seen so rampant and out of control. What can I do with this frustration of people being judgemental, critical, prideful and condescending? The whole uncharitable mentality seeps down into the cracks of society, in families between brothers and sisters, husband and wives, children and parents. The evil one surely is enjoying this moment of division – even in our churches their is division with our Cardinals and Bishops and Priests. Opening one’s mouth must constantly be checked for it can be taken quite out of context. Oh Mary, Queen of Peace, come and reign in our hearts again so that we may see with humility our own insecurities, weaknesses, failures and sinful actions first; then look with charity towards our neighbor.
Today I should have rose early to go to Mass since this was a first Saturday in which greater reverence is given to our Mother Mary who leads us to her Son. I rose in time but procrastinated, thought about it, procrastinated more and then the time was gone. I feel ashamed of my weakness, my inability to show her my gratitude for all her motherly interventions that I am aware of and those I am not. I can now only ask for mercy, to repent of my sloth and seek her forgiveness. You may think I am crazy; it isn’t a holy day or Sunday, and the obligation to even attend weekly on Sunday is lifted. Why am I so hard on myself? It’s because Mary has the graces I need, and want, and I chose to turn away and say, not needed today Mary. Because when I don’t choose to take any and all opportunities to be with her and her Son in the highest form of prayer – the Mass – then I am saying no thank you to her graces. Who would say they only need their father, not their mother? Their are times I need one more than the other, but in all likelihood, I need them both. And I need them often, not just when their is an issue or problem. I need them most when I think I don’t!
Life isn’t easy. Choices are just that – a hard left or right. Consequences follow every choice – whether it is in this life or as we stand before God in our final judgement after death. He sees everything – he already knows it all. He gives us so many opportunities – every single day – to receive more and more grace which is like getting better directions for our way in this crazy world. Without our Lord’s help, we will be lost. Mary brings those graces from her Son and unfortunately it seems there are probably more graces than people asking for them. The love of the holy family for us, the adopted sons and daughters, is infinite. Will you join me in letting more of it pour into our hearts and seek forgiveness for what we have thrown away?
Oh Mary most pure, Mary who has the greatest compassion, empathy, understanding and courage; Mary who loves her Son so much she extends herself to all of us; Mary help me to come to you. I am sorry I have been weak, failing to come before you and giving in to sloth. I want to be near you. Like St. Paul, I often do not understand why I don’t do the things I want to do and instead do what I don’t want to do. Help me to learn and grow in my journey to your Son, help me to hear the directions that lead me by following you ever more closely. Next time this occurs, help me to remember how I felt after that poor choice so that I may honor you and give your Son all the glory through my participation at Holy Mass. Mary, help others to look at you as the conduit of graces which your Son desires for us all; help us to call upon your motherly care in our times of need; whether it is to just sit and be held by you or in seeking your counsel or the counsel of your Son. I know you have my greatest interests in mind — to live my life so that your Son will welcome me to eternal life, and to bring with me my family, friends and all God’s people as well. Mary, Mother of God and my mother, pray for us now and at the time of our death. Amen.
First photo By Cadetgray – Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=14324487
Third photo By Peter Paul Rubens – http://freeforumzone.leonardo.it/discussione.aspx?idd=354952&p=4, Public Domain, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=5723565
Fourth photo By Giovanni Battista Salvi da Sassoferrato – Web Gallery of Art: Image Info about artwork, Public Domain, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=1432637