Sep 8 – Feast of the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary
The birth of the Blessed Virgin Mary announced joy and the approaching salvation of a lost world. Mary was brought into the world not like other children of Adam, infected with the contagion of sin, but pure, holy, beautiful, and glorious, adorned with all the most precious graces fitting for the one predestined to be the Mother of the Saviour. Never did she have the slightest inclination towards anything other than the absolute and immediate Will of God.
She appeared indeed in the weak condition of all mortals, but in the eyes of Heaven she already transcended the highest seraphim in purity, humility, charity, and the richest ornaments of grace. God had created her in the original grace, as in the beginning Adam and Eve had enjoyed that ineffable privilege; after original sin, it was lost for all Adam’s posterity, until the time of the Redemption dawned in Mary. (Cf. I Cor. 15:21-23)
The nations celebrate, often too noisily, the birthdays of the great ones of this earth. How then ought we, Christians, to rejoice in that of the Virgin Mary, Mother of our Salvation, and to present publicly to God the homage of our best praises and thanksgiving for the great mercies He has shown in her, imploring her mediation with her Divine Son!
Jesus of Nazareth will not reject the supplications of His most holy Mother, through whom He chose to descend from Heaven; she, the Spouse of the Canticle, is all beautiful and is the one He was pleased to obey while on earth. Her love, care, and tenderness for Him, the title and qualities which she bears, the charity and graces with which she is adorned, and the crown of glory with which she is honoured, incline Him readily to receive her recommendations and petitions.
“…called according to His purpose”
The one singular event that was the most pivotal point of my spiritual life was the act of consecration to Our Blessed Mother. That was the day in 2014, that I decided to turn my life to the loving embrace of Mother Mary. The day I decided I will stop trying to fight all my battles, carry all my worries, fulfil all my duties and responsibilities, bear all my fears, sorrows, disappointments and anxieties, to heal my wounds, to find my peace and happiness, all by myself and through my own efforts. On that day, and through that act of consecration, I decided that Our Mother would do all those things for me, with me, through me and in me.
Hence, it is indeed very ironic as I reflect on this sharing – that it is actually very difficult for me to pen my thoughts. This is one of the most difficult reflections I have had to put together. And for the longest time, I wondered why? Then one day, as in so many occasions of great struggle and darkness, a tiny flicker of light ignites. Mary comes to me. She shows me the way forward. My struggle was because I was trying so hard to find words that can encapsulate everything that she is to me. Because words alone cannot achieve the outcome I wanted. So, I will simply say these few things as my tribute to Mary – the Mother of my God. My Mother. Our Mother.
To have recourse to her in everything. There is no longer any loneliness, any loss, any regret, any mistake, any hope and dream, any joy and blessing and favor that I cannot face or ask or hope in anymore. So long as I place them in her loving arms and her Mother’s heart – and leave them there.
To be led by her in everything: There is no longer a fear, a pain, a confusion, a problem, a hurt, a failure, a crisis, that did not have an answer any more. So long as I place them in her loving arms and her Mother’s heart – and leave them there.
To place all my trust and my hope in her for everything: Where my deepest desires and longings are surrendered to her. And to then allow her to sanctify and direct those desires to the will of her Son. For only then, will I truly come to the true peace and joy from a hope and a desire blessed by God. So long as I place them in her loving arms and her Mother’s heart – and leave them there.
To depend on her completely for everything: To depend on that which even God Almighty himself found dependable and trustworthy and worthy to place His plan for the salvation of the entire human race upon. God depended on the Fiat of Mary. And she did not disappoint. And if God can depend on her. Who am I to think otherwise? All the battles I would otherwise have wanted to fight for myself, I no longer need to. So long as I place them in her loving arms and her Mother’s heart – and leave them there. In Mary, lies the most powerful woman in all of creation. In Mary, the head of Satan himself lies crushed and defeated.
To have total confidence and peace in everything: The more I give to her, the more space I have in my soul for her to then fill with her presence and the presence of her Son. Peace invariably follows. Deep, abiding and divine peace. That the world cannot give and cannot take back from me. So long as I place them in her loving arms and her Mother’s heart – and leave them there.
Mary is my hope, my peace, my strength, my joy, my wisdom, my refuge, my shelter, my comfort, my healing, my path to meeting her son one day in heaven. On my earthly journey, I struggle greatly to remain faithful and to grow close to Jesus. God, in His mercy, then sends me His Mother instead and in His stead. This is His great gift to me – His love for me through nothing less magnificent than the love of His own Mother. Through Mary, death has no sting over me. I look forward to the day I can finally see her face-to-face and give her back all the countless hugs she has given me on my earthly journey. And I know, Jesus will also be in that huddle. And just in case some of you out there think I am bordering on the sacrilegious, St Maximillian Kolbe assures, “never be afraid of loving Mary too much, you can never love her more than Jesus did”.
For all the times I’ve had to stare into the darkest moments of my life and lost hope – Mary comes to me. It is Mary that makes the impossible possible for me. With her I can see in the darkness, and I can hear in the silence. For no child could ever be lost, in the arms of a perfect Mother. In the arms of Mary.
(Today’s OXYGEN by Justus Teo)
Prayer: Father help us. When we fail to see how great a gift you have given to us – of your own Mother.
Thanksgiving: Father, thank you. For Mary. Our Mother.