Meditation is an ideal way to pray. Using God's word (Lectio Divina) allows me to hear, listen and reflect on what the Lord wants to say to me - to one of his disciples - just like He did two thousand years ago.
The best time to reflect is at the beginning of the day and for at least 15 to 30 minutes.
Prior to going to sleep, read the Mass readings for the next day and then, in the morning, reflect on the Meditation offered on this website.
I hope these daily meditations allow you to know, love and imitate the Lord in a more meaningful way.
God bless you!


Saturday, October 9, 2010

Luke 11:27-28 Blessed Are They

Luke 11: 27-28 Blessed Are They

(Click here for readings)

Among all the crowded confusion and chatter in this not-so-crowded world, there is one who speaks softly and carries no big stick! While Jesus was speaking, a woman from the crowd called out and said, “Blessed is the womb that carried you and the breasts that nursed you!” Yes, it makes so much sense. Why should Mary not be the first among the beatitudes? Did Elizabeth not say it first, “Blessed are you among woman and blessed is the fruit of your womb, Jesus?” Blessed indeed are you, Mary, who carried the Lord and was chosen by Him to be the Mother of God. So why does the Lord pause, take notice, and respond with a rebuttal? Why should we honor Mary?

“Blessed are those who hear the word of God and observe it.”

What does the Lord love? I can tell you from my experiences in the confessional that he loves a humble heart. A humble heart is a trusting heart. This rule of thumb is simple: If I can confess all my sins, then I can correct them! If I can admit my failings then I can fix them. This is such a hard saying, who can accept it but the meek and humble of heart?

There is so much to cover up in our lives: so much pain to “morphinize” and so many scars to wrap up. The danger is that we end up covering ourselves so well that we become mummies. The masks that we wear on a constant basis may change according to our situation, circumstances and individuals, but they are still masks and they still cover like armor the soft spots of our wounded flesh and soul. I am no psychiatrist, I couldn’t even spell the word if it weren’t for spell-check, but if the Lord gave me any type of understanding as a priest, it would be to understand the drama, the reality and truth, of sin and blessing. Why all this? For Christ’s sake!

Let it be done to me according to your word.” Mary heard the Word, kept the Word and observed the Word for all of her life, including the years before and after the 33 years of her son’s earthly life. She is blessed because she heard, believed and observed all that her son asked and lived. Her last words, recorded in Scripture should be our last words recorded in the morning and at night time, “Do whatever he tells you.” This is godly advice from a holy woman. Mary's holiness is a humility that allowed her to trust and to believe that "The Lord is greater than I."

The woman in the crowd placed too much emphasis on the physical, the maternal aspect of Mary’s role in salvation. That would mean the exclusion of all women and of course all men. Yes, she cared for, nurtured, and bathed the Lord. She is an outstanding mom. But she is a wonderful Mother, a role model for all Christians because she contemplated what she did not understand and placed all these things within her heart. Mary’s love for the Lord surpasses all of the natural bonds of motherhood. Everything that the anonymous woman said was true, but there is more here than meets the eyes. She was neither Jew nor Greek, slave or free person, male or female, she was all for Christ: One for all and all for one!

Mary carried her son in her womb, and also in her heart, soul and mind. She nursed her son with her breasts, but also with her eyes, her lips, her love, her devotion and her fidelity. She was a disciple of the Lord and carried no sack, no money bag and no walking stick. Mary spoke softly and carried no big stick, except for one in the shape of a cross. Not a physical cross but a heavier one.

As we have just learned, our struggles and blessings are not always physical, but they are definitely real. Blessed are those who hear the word of God and observe it. If you think about it, life could not be any easier than this. It is amazing how you and I mess it all up!

7 comments:

  1. Beautiful Father, just beautiful!

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  2. “…she contemplated what she did not understand and placed all these things within her heart.”

    “Blessed are those who hear the word of God and observe it. “

    “ Do whatever he tells you.”

    I ‘pondered’ these words off and on all day long, asking the Holy Spirit what I needed to ‘get’ from them today. I got nothing. I asked a friend, got more of nothing, sat in adoration for ½ an hour waiting, reading it over and over, “hear the word of God and observe it.” It was like one of those cryptic clues to a mystery that I could never figure out.

    “Do whatever he tells you.””…hear the word of God and observe it.” “Do whatever he tells you.” ”…hear the word of God and observe it.”… finally! HEAR THE WORD OF GOD & DO WHATEVER HE TELLS YOU! Duh!

    Now I see what you meant by,” life could not be any easier than this. It is amazing how you and I mess it all up!” But I think it should be “life could not be any simpler than this...” Because it is not that easy to do what He tells us. There are forces coming against us whispering in our ears telling us it’s impossible to do what He asks and we/I fall for the lies.

    For years the Lord asked me to do something specific, I heard Him clearly at a silent retreat 6 years ago, I knew it in my heart, it was obvious it needed to be done, I had it written over and over in my journals of conversations with God for the past five years.

    So why didn’t I just do it? I didn’t feel like it. It was too much sacrifice. It was going to be hard work. I'd probably fail. I didn’t believe I could do it. I didn’t make time to do it. I didn’t want to put the effort into doing it. I didn’t value it enough. I was selfish, self centered, independent, and just not willing.

    I prayed to want to want to do it off and on for years. But it was never a priority and it was probably impossible any way. It was too late to fix.

    A month or so ago, I still didn’t believe I could do it or if I even wanted to put the effort into doing it. But with MUCH PRAYER, I got the desire to want to work on it.

    And with MUCH prompting from the Holy Spirit and a few others, I decided to let go of my pride, for a little while, trust in the Lord, die to self, give unconditional love a shot and what I thought was impossible, became REAL. My heart changed almost over night.

    This was no little thing. It was monumental! If I had only heard the word of God and observed it when I first heard it, I would have had six more years of joy or happiness in my life. I am sure He was telling me to do this ‘thing’ for 15 years before that, but I wasn’t even open to hearing Him then.

    “As we have just learned, our struggles and blessings are not always physical, but they are definitely real. Blessed are those who hear the word of God and observe it. If you think about it, life could not be any easier than this. It is amazing how you and I mess it all up!”

    The moral of this story for me is: when you hear the word of the Lord, Just do what He says and no one gets hurt! Just Do It!

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  3. Father, your description of Mary's love for the Lord is so vivid and so true and inspiring. I pray that someday I will be able to love the Lord as Mary did.

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  4. “There is so much to cover up in our lives: so much pain to “morphinize” and so many scars to wrap up. The danger is that we end up covering ourselves so well that we become mummies. The masks that we wear on a constant basis may change according to our situation, circumstances and individuals, but they are still masks and they still cover like armor the soft spots of our wounded flesh and soul.”

    This statement has been laying around in my mind for days. I’ve been trying to figure out what you are saying or what this means to me. It’s been like a puzzle all twisted up waiting to be solved.

    Scars and old wounds that I had long since forgotten are reappearing. I tell myself that I am completely open for God to heal what’s broken in me, and when he comes to me with the ‘cure’, I try to avert His attention to some other ‘minor’ ailment to avoid any pain that may be caused by the ‘treatment’. I often find myself covering the wounds with a bandages, and then applying the medicine over the bandage so it won’t hurt. True it won’t sting, but it also won’t heal.

    When will I rip off all the bandages, the armor and all the protective gear that is between me and the healing power of God? Good question. Only God knows.

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  5. Dear Anonymous,
    That is a puzzle! But what would I know, my specialty is word searches.
    I would suggest that maybe a Dr. could help with the treatment and cure? I am sure God works through Dr's. I would suggest getting a verbal diagnosis of the "treatment" for the wounds/injuries to see if it can be cured. From what I personally know all "treatments" are painful. I am praying that God directs you to find a cure so you can be healed.

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  6. Dear Anonyomous,
    I agree, the switching on and off of masks tends to conceal who a person really is. The masks make it so it is hard to believe what is real and not real with a person. Masks confuse me. But maybe that is just me.

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  7. "thing" is whole.

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