Blessed Lady

It was foretold in the beginning of creation by God Himself that there would be “enmity between Satan and a Woman”.

God said to Satan after the fall of Adam and Eve:

“And I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your offspring and hers; he will crush your head, and you will strike his heel.” Genesis 3:15

The woman spoken of in this Scripture is the Virgin Mary and it is Jesus that will crush the head of the serpent through His Passion, Death and Resurrection. The serpent strikes the heel of Jesus through the Crucifixion of Jesus Christ but Jesus conquers evil through His atoning sacrifice.

In Genesis 3:15 we can discern the holiness of the Virgin Mary. There is ‘enmity’ or ‘opposition’ between Mary and Satan (the serpent) because of Mary’s perpetual fidelity to God.

Let’s walk through the Holy Scriptures to learn more about this Blessed Lady.

A Virgin Chosen by God to be the Mother of God’s Only Son, Jesus

The Angel Gabriel greets Mary with these words: “Hail, full of grace, the Lord is with thee: blessed art thou among women.” Luke 1:28

“Mary was greatly troubled at his words and wondered what kind of greeting this might be. But the angel said to her, “Do not be afraid, Mary; you have found favour with God. You will conceive and give birth to a son, and you are to call him Jesus. He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. The Lord God will give him the throne of his father David, and he will reign over Jacob’s descendants forever; his kingdom will never end.” Luke 1:29-33

The highly favoured lady is perplexed as she is still a virgin and the Angel explains:

“The Holy Spirit will come on you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you. So the holy one to be born will be called the Son of God.”

The Virgin Mary gives God her unconditional consent: “Behold the handmaid of the Lord; be it unto me according to thy word.” Luke 1:38

God knew he could count on Mary’s full consent to His Holy Will and with Mary’s consent God conceives within her.

Let us pray,

Holy Lord we consent to your Holy Will in our lives. Fill us with your grace so that we can fulfill the plans you have for us. We love You Jesus and Mary!

The Visitation – A Sign of Mary’s Charity

The Angel Gabriel tells Mary that her cousin Elizabeth will also give birth to a son although she is advanced in age. Mary being selfless thinks not of her own needs but on the needs of her cousin as she sets out to visit her and assist her.

When Elizabeth heard Mary’s greeting, the baby leaped in her womb, and Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit. In a loud voice she exclaimed, “Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb! And why am I so honored, that the mother of my Lord should come to me? For as soon as the sound of your greeting reached my ears, the baby in my womb leaped for joy. Blessed is she who has believed that the Lord’s word to her will be fulfilled.” Luke 1: 41-45

Elizabeth’s husband, Zechariah, did not show the same faith as Mary. He also was told by the Angel Gabriel that his wife Elizabeth would conceive and bear a son (John the Baptist) but Zechariah doubted the Angelic messenger and so the Angel rendered him mute until the day of John’s birth.

Let us pray,

Holy Lord fill us with faith and trust in You.  Help us to be charitable and merciful and help us to remember always that with God all things are possible!

Mary – A Woman of Prayer Sings a Song of Praise and Thanksgiving

Mary’s prayer called the ‘Magnificat’ reveals many things about her.

In this prayer we see the humble Mary rejoicing in God’s blessing as she praises the Almighty for His great goodness, for His mercy and for His justice.  Mary loves God with all her soul!

Mary prays,

“My soul glorifies the Lord

and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior,

for he has been mindful

of the humble state of his servant.

From now on all generations will call me blessed,

for the Mighty One has done great things for me—

holy is his name.

His mercy extends to those who fear him,

from generation to generation.

He has performed mighty deeds with his arm;

he has scattered those who are proud in their inmost thoughts.

He has brought down rulers from their thrones

but has lifted up the humble.

He has filled the hungry with good things

but has sent the rich away empty.

He has helped his servant Israel,

remembering to be merciful

to Abraham and his descendants forever,

just as he promised our ancestors.”

Let us pray,

Holy Lord help us to be humble people of prayer as we trust in You and remember always how much we need Your grace in our lives.  Without You we can do nothing! Help us to praise and thank You for Your many blessings as we consecrate our lives to You for Your Glory.

Mary’s Great Responsibility and Courage

Mary trusts in God to help her. She is expecting a child through the power of the Holy Spirit, engaged but not yet married to Joseph. When Joseph realizes Mary is pregnant he thinks Mary has been unfaithful to him. Society at that time would have had Mary stoned to death for her infidelity. God intervenes to help Mary with yet another angelic visitation. This time an Angel of the Lord appears to Joseph in a dream saying: “Joseph son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary home as your wife, because what is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit. She will give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins.” Matthew 1:20-21

Mary and Joseph step up to the greatest responsibility. They will be parents to the long awaited Messiah, God Incarnate. They will have to protect Him and supply for all His needs.

Let us pray,

Holy Lord help us to be courageous in accepting our responsibilities in life. Please grant us the grace to be good mothers and fathers teaching our children by being positive examples of Your love.

A Humble Handmaid Gives Birth where the Animals are being kept

Mary gives birth to the Prince of Peace that the Prophet Isaiah spoke about, but she is forced to take shelter in a place where the animals are being kept as there is no room in the Inn. Jesus, Our Lord and Saviour, is already being rejected by the cruelty of people.

It’s hard to imagine giving birth in a non-sterile environment, without the assistance of doctors and nurses. Mary demonstrates the greatest humility giving birth in a dirty environment surrounded by animals.

“She gave birth to her first child, a son. She wrapped him snugly in strips of cloth and laid him in a manger, because there was no lodging available for them.” Luke 2:7

Jesus, ‘the Bread of Life’ is placed in a manger, a place where the animals feed.

Let us pray,

Holy Lord we praise You and we thank You for having chosen Mary and Joseph, such humble and loving servants. Help us to become more like them, courageous in times of struggle and need.

A Prophecy of Suffering

It is common in today’s society to think of blessedness in association with comfort and privilege and pleasure.  Yet in the life of the Virgin Mary and St. Joseph, their blessed lives entailed the greatest hardship and suffering.

This life of suffering is foretold when Jesus is presented in the temple.

“Now there was a man in Jerusalem called Simeon, who was righteous and devout. He was waiting for the consolation of Israel, and the Holy Spirit was on him. It had been revealed to him by the Holy Spirit that he would not die before he had seen the Lord’s Messiah. Moved by the Spirit, he went into the temple courts. When the parents brought in the child Jesus to do for him what the custom of the Law required, Simeon took him in his arms and praised God, saying: “Sovereign Lord, as you have promised, you may now dismiss your servant in peace. For my eyes have seen your salvation, which you have prepared in the sight of all nations: a light for revelation to the Gentiles, and the glory of your people Israel.” Luke 2:25-32

“Then Simeon blessed them and said to Mary, his mother: “This child is destined to cause the falling and rising of many in Israel, and to be a sign that will be spoken against, so that the thoughts of many hearts will be revealed. And a sword will pierce your own soul too.” Luke 2:34-35

Let us pray,

Holy Lord please strengthen us in our times of suffering. May Your light inspire us to choose paths that are pleasing to You.

The Slaughter of the Innocents – Broken Hearts and Refugees in a Foreign Land

King Herod had learned from the wise men (the Magi) that the ‘King of the Jews’ was born. He wanted to learn of the whereabouts of Jesus from the wise men so he could kill him, but the Magi did not reveal the location where they found the Jesus, Mary and Joseph.

God protected Jesus, Mary and Joseph with another angelic visitation instructing them on what to do. “An angel of the Lord appeared to Joseph in a dream. “Get up!” he said. “Take the Child and His mother and flee to Egypt. Stay there until I tell you, for Herod is going to search for the Child to kill Him.” So he got up, took the Child and His mother by night, and withdrew to Egypt, where he stayed until the death of Herod. This fulfilled what the Lord had spoken through the prophet: “Out of Egypt I called My Son.” Matthew 2:13-15

Meanwhile King Herod ordered a terror attack and put to death all the boys in Bethlehem and its vicinity who were two years old and under.

“Then what was spoken through the prophet Jeremiah was fulfilled: “A voice is heard in Ramah, weeping and great mourning, Rachel weeping for her children, and refusing consolation, because they are no more.” Matthew 2:17-18

I find it difficult to contemplate this tragedy. I can’t imagine how much Mary and Joseph must have suffered knowing of this horrific slaughter of innocent children. How difficult it must have been to be forced to run and become refugees in a foreign land.

Let us pray,

Holy Lord please protect the innocent children in our world from violence and abuse. Please send Your Holy Spirit upon all refugees and help us to embrace them and welcome them into our communities. Through Your infinite love and power please help us to stop terror attacks.

A Contemplative – Pondering God’s Truth

Mary did not live a privileged life of royalty. She had no servants preparing her meals or washing her floors. God’s humble handmaiden had to embrace ordinary household tasks while taking care of and nurturing the young child Jesus. Mary lived a hidden, ordinary simple life and yet how extraordinary to be the Mother of God Incarnate watching the young Jesus grow into manhood!  What joy she must have experienced living with Our Lord.

The Scriptures say “Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart.” Luke 2:19 The Virgin Mary was a contemplative, reflecting on God’s Word and God’s Way as she sought to teach the child Jesus to learn and embrace the Holy Will of God.

Let us pray,

Holy Lord enable us to reflect deeply on Your Holy Word and Your Holy Way. Teach us to contemplate Your Holy Will so we can make choices that honour You and give You glory.

An Intercessor – Helping Those in Need

We see at the wedding at Cana Mary’s merciful nature. The bride and groom have run out of wine and Mary intercedes by telling Jesus of the problem. “When the wine was gone, Jesus’ mother said to him, “They have no more wine.” “Woman, why do you involve me?” Jesus replied. “My hour has not yet come.” His mother said to the servants, “Do whatever he tells you.” John 2:3-5

This is the scene of Jesus’ first public miracle. Here Jesus changes water into wine. The Virgin Mary’s intercession resulted in Jesus performing a miracle.

I grew up with two grandmothers who both prayed the Rosary. They both believed that the Virgin Mary is still interceding for us in Heaven. I believe that too and I pray for her intercession ‘Holy Mary, Mother of God pray for us sinners, now and at the hour of our death. Amen’

Let us pray,

Holy Lord thank You for giving us such a holy Christian role model in the Virgin Mary. Help us to believe in the power of prayer and to be intercessors as we pray for one another.

A Sword Pierces Her Soul – Jesus Dies to Save Us

I believe the Virgin Mary is the most blessed lady that ever lived. She suffered in ways that are difficult for us to contemplate. She watched as her Son, Our Holy Lord Jesus, was tortured and killed in the most barbaric, inhumane way. She stands bravely and stoically at the foot of the Cross of Jesus watching Him give His life for the salvation of souls. As Jesus is dying on the Cross He looks at His Mother Mary standing with the Apostle John and He says, “Woman, behold, your son!” Then he said to the disciple, “Behold, your mother!” And from that hour the disciple took her to his own home.” John 19:26-27

I don’t think Jesus waited until He was dying on the Cross to make new living arrangements for His mother. I believe Jesus was making a declaration to His Church, His Bride: “Behold your mother!”

The Virgin Mary is God’s beloved chosen lady. She is the quintessential example of what it means to be humble, selfless and devoted to God’s Holy Will. I can’t imagine how much she suffered to watch Jesus be rejected and murdered! I can imagine how she  helped the first Apostles to write the Gospel of Jesus Christ. She is an inspiration to all of us and I believe she is the Mother of the Church and that she continues to intercede for all who call upon her to pray.

I know all Christians don’t believe that Mary intercedes from Heaven but let that not be a source of enmity between us as Christians.

Let’s love the Virgin Mary and reflect on her holy virtues and let us join together as One Body of Christ to remember the Passion of Christ every day at the Time Jesus died for us, 3pm, in our local time zones. Let us come together to pray for the salvation of all souls. Let us pray that Jesus will send us His Holy Spirit to change the world, one soul at a time.

Learn more about A Peaceful Revolution in the Name of Jesus Christ here.

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