Mary Visits Elizabeth
Reflection on the Gospel of the Wednesday
Mary set out and went in haste. We all want all the blessings that our Mother Mary had. We have said many times how blessed she is to have borne Jesus our Lord and Saviour, but are we willing to surrender in faith in times of difficulty and yet be a testimony of Holy and Silent night that converts our humble stable life into the royal crib of the incarnate Word, our God. We can’t stop talking about Marys Life, how she raised and instructed the omnipotent and omniscient God as a mother, how she ate with Jesus on the same table that He made with His own hand, how she was the first teacher to the Lord and Master of creation and yet there is another example in todays gospel reading where we can’t stop talking about her selfless act of forgetting her own self before the needs of others.
We all want to say yes like Mary. But how many of us are willing to put the will of God before our will?
Today, my fellow travellers to heaven, I want to bring before you not the Mother of God but the Bearer of Christ. We are all supposed to be pregnant with the Lord. A women physically holds the baby in her womb which is just one part of her body but the glow is seen even on her face which is the outer part of the body. How are we different from a pregnant lady when we receive Jesus’ body and it becomes a part of our body? How come we are not pregnant when we are the Temples of the Holy Spirit?
And if some of us say Yes to the above question then why aren’t people around us leaping with joy when they see Jesus who is in us? For those who don’t know Jesus, why are their hearts not troubled or burning when they see you living like another Christ? If you are pregnant with Christ then why are you not hated by the scribes and pharisees Of this world? Why do the people you help, think it is a favour and not an act of love when you visit them in the name of Christ? Finally were is your song of praise to God which gives glory to God and at the same time lets the world know that you are just a servant?
My bothers and sister if the people around us are not parsing God for your visit or if their life is not challenged by yours then ask yourself who are you serving.
Lord like your Mother may our life be a song of praise to you. Like your Mother may we always lead people to you when they praise us and not get puffed up. Lord like your Mother may we bravely walk alongside you to calvary. Like your mother may we stand under your cross, brave and hopeful. Mary our Mother Pray for us to be able to present ourselves to your Son with our whole lives, and if God wills even bring glory to Him with our death. Amen
Another Reflection on Today’s Gospel
In preparing for an Infancy Narrative presentation by the Bible Cell, a friend from the group commented on the foreknowledge that Elizabeth, and by effect John the Baptist in the womb had of the conception of the Messiah. In preparing for this reflection, while reading the text, I realised also of how many things Luke has left unsaid in his narrative, either because he had no knowledge of these things of did not have first hand confirmation of the same. We then required to take the passage and ask appropriate questions to glean more understanding. The thing to keep in mind is that both Mary and Elizabeth are separated by great distance. We do know that Zechariah had an angelic encounter, but would he be able to communicate everything to his wife Elizabeth, since he was stuck dumb? We are not told if the angel communicated other things to Zechariah about John the Baptist and also the Messiah… Here I am obligated to lean towards even Elizabeth having an encounter with an Angel – probably Gabriel, and he has communicated to her about Mary, and her role in salvation history. All this highlights the type of relationship each of the main four characters of Luke’s Infancy Narratives had with God. If this is true, possible there were other holy people that were also given the glad tidings of the Messiah’s eminent coming. Maybe not so early, but definitely. I basically base this on a conversation recorded in Genesis, where the 3 visitors to Abraham, while setting out on their way to Sodom and Gomorrah, in the evening, have with each other…
Then the men set out from there, and they looked down toward Sodom.
And Abraham went with them to set them on their way.
The Lord said, “Shall I hide from Abraham what I am about to do,
seeing that Abraham shall surely become a great and mighty nation,
and all the nations of the earth shall be blessed in him?
Genesis 19: 16-17
“Basically what God is saying here is that, I cannot hide my intentions and actions from those I have a relation with…” And that is what God was doing when he became incarnate within Mary… He was telling his friends of His presence among humanity. And by this we can understand Elizabeth’s recognition of Mary as Queen Mother – the Mother to be of the Messiah. And this great honour takes away the reproach she has had of rejection, because of her bareness, by the people around. This is also a representation of the reproach that Judah had, as announced to Daniel – though you go back from exile, your spiritual exile will continue for another 70 x 7 years, till the time God visits you again… this was that time.
God is amongst us eve today, so there is no reproach for those who turn to Him and accept His Lordship. Yes no sin can keep him away or make him flee from us, except we pushing Him away from our lives. So approach Him and say, ‘Jesus you are my Lord and My God, lead me and guide me, teach me and save me…‘