Mary Mother of God – January 1, 2023
Pam rushed in to see her doctor, looking very much worried and all strung out. When she’s finally called in to the examination room, she says, “Doctor, take a good look at me. When I woke up this morning, I looked at myself in the mirror, and I saw my hair was all wirey and frazzled; my skin was all wrinkly. I had purple blemishes under my eyes and I had this white, corpse-like look on my face! What’s wrong with me, Doctor?”
The doctor looked her over for a couple of moments, and then calmly replied, “Well, let’s start by saying that there’s nothing wrong with your eye sight.” (jokes.christiansunite.com)
Seeing clearly! That’s what Mary’s life helps us to do, each and every day. Our Mother of God identifies four ways to help sharpen our vision.
1. Mary helps us to see how precious we are in God’s sight!
- Jesus came to earth to live among us! (gospel)
- Jesus didn’t want to leave us, steeped in our sins. 33 years on earth!
- Jesus made us a part of God’s family (second reading)
- Died by shedding his most Precious blood to show how precious we are to God.
In our world, many people feel expendible. —Homeless, drug-addicted, depressed, living under harsh government regimes with no hope of an honest and fair election. Mary challenges us to stand up for them!
2. Mary invites us to draw near to her Son! (holy of holies in OT temple, only High Priest was allowed to enter)
- Shepherds coming to visit, later the magi
- no strings attached, no having to prove we are worthy
- no charge or expectation
Mary challenges not to stand in the way of others approaching the Lord. She further invites us to develop our sense of hospitality in the church, especially when newcomers arrive and when people are considering the Catholic faith. Ways to draw near her son….receiving the Eucharist frequently and sitting in God’s presence.
3. Mary helps us to ponder the meaning our lives on earth are meant to have.
- Mary pondered the words of the shepherds, who relayed what the Angels told them.
- All of us, too, have vocations that we’re meant to live out as fully as possible.
How can we help each person become the best possible version of themselves? How can we support those who are having a difficult time finding what God’s purpose is for them, in life, especially when they’re struggling with health issues, separation or divorce, or coming to terms with their sexuality?
4. Mary helps us lift up peace as a gospel value.
- gave birth to the Prince of Peace. Messiah, to bring peace to the world, but in an
Mary challenges us to be agents of peace and social justice in a world where often the poor and the marginalized are trampled upon at the expense of the rich and the powerful, and where religions sometimes stand in the way of true peace and justice in a given region. Marys’ heart and prayers are especially directed toward the people of Ukraine as they have to endure an unjust war, in harsh winter conditions.
Let us resolve this new year then, to see things as Mary sees them, and to sing out Hallelujah to the Lord for giving us so holy a Mother to be ours as well.
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