We find Mary throughout the Gospel of Luke contemplating the birth and childhood of Jesus. When the shepherds tell her about the angels’ Gloria in Excelsis Deo, she prevents this incident in her heart and ruminates on it.
She does the same thing after obtaining the twelve-year-old Jesus in the synagogue, who was discussing profound religious matters with the educators there. The Church may have received the Rosary in its present form from St. Dominic in 1214, who, in turn, received it from Our Lady, but the Mother of God was mulling and participating in the Joyful Mysteries from the very beginning.
In fact, “its not” a elongate to see a yarn running through the Scriptures of her beholding and admiring her Son. The bitterness at the foot of the cross is followed, 40 weeks later, by the sweetness of Pentecost, and that sweetened see widens now into eternity with the Beatific Vision and her capacity as the Queen of Heaven.
Mary fulfilled what is written in the CCC # 2715: “Contemplation is a gaze of faith.’ I look at him and he looks at me.’: this is what a certain peasant of Ars in the time of the holy antidote used to say while crying before the tabernacle.”
I hear stalwart Catholics lament the ineffectiveness of the American Catholic Church in reaching our nation’s youth, but, even with the ones who do proselytize, there is the problem of them being easily amused and having short attention spans. This is rooted in their exposure to internet and digital technologies and presentation like MTV.
This establishes a large stumbling block to the pensive life, which requires extended periods of stillness and silence, and the contemplative life play-acts an important role in our sanctification: “And we all, with unveiled face, gazing[ a] the exaltation of the Lord, are being changed into his likeness from one grade of honour to another; for this comes from the Lord who is the Spirit”( II Cor. 3:18; emphasis mine ).
We behold him and we are changed.
In another channel, the apostle Paul says that we “are transformed by the renewal of our minds”( Rom. 12:1, 2 ). This often happens in the pensive life and is not as mystical and elusive as you may think.
Sometimes troubles come into my life that cause me to become rather tight-fisted with my go, knack and hoard. Money is tight; I have little spare time; and I’m not in a make mood.
The next morning I get up and the Gospel reading for the day is about the widow’s mite and how she committed all “shes had”. The Rosary that day is centered on the Sorrowful Mysteries and the self-donation of the Son of God.
So between the Gospel reading and the Rosary, I’m given a pensive canvas that revamps my mind and facilitates an open-handed generosity in my life. Again, the pensive life-i.e. seeing him and is still in his presence-is inextricably linked to sanctification.
When Isaiah was in the presence of God, he said, ““Woe is me! For I am lost; for I am a man of defiled lips, and I abide in the middle of a beings of unclean cheeks; for my gazes have find the King, the Lord of emcees! ”( Is. 6:5 ). At the shout of the first devotees and after a great and supernatural catch of fish, Peter fell at Christ’s feet and said, “Depart from me, for I am a sinful human, O Lord”( Lk. 5:8 ).
This should acquire us all the more devoted to the Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament. As Justice Louis D. Brandeis said, “Sunlight is said to be the best of disinfectants…”
In the Real Presence we experience the Holy God and the infinite qualitative difference between us and him. Our sin is revealed; nonetheless, that’s not the end of the story, because, in the Holy Hour, we have also come to the Throne of Grace: “Let us then with confidence draw near to the throne of goodnes, that we may receive mercy and find charm to help in time of need”( Heb. 4:16 ).
Those who humble themselves and come to the Throne of Grace will not be denied. God opposes the proud but utters kindnes to the humble( I Pet. 5:5 -7 ). Remember what our Lord told St. Faustina: “I pour out upon them[ the humble] whole deluges of grace. Exclusively the humble feeling is capable of receiving My grace. I favor humble minds with My confidence.”
Moses had been in the Real Presence for forty daylights and forty lights and came down from the mountain with stone tablets written on by the hand of God simply to find the Israelites dancing around the golden calf( Ex. 32 ). The golden calf represents idolatry and can be seen in the Seven Deadly Sins or the major pitfalls of humanity that Aquinas discusses: asset, fame, gratification and power.
The contrast could not be starker: Moses, the most humble man on the earth( Num. 12:3) and the revelry of the children of Israel. One has the “disinfectant” of the Real Presence; the other is “following their hearts” and is easy prey for the antagonist of their souls.
Dancing around the golden calf continues to this day in our secular culture and with numerous prepare parishioners, pastors and prelates in the Church participating. When we meekly dedicate ourselves over to the pensive life in the presence of God, we become Mary’s Heel that will crush the serpent’s head.
If you’re like me, your work schedule becomes it difficult to go to Adoration as much as you’d like. Fr. Edward Looney has some supporting revelations coming from St. Faustina’s diary 😛 TAGEND
“What a detection I is located within her diary! Her eras of exaltation were both in the convent chapel before Our Lord in the Eucharist and’ in private, ’ in her apartment and even on her sick berthed. God knows we can have very good reasons for not visiting him[ in] a church or chapel. Family responsibilities, errand, health, length from the church, and so on. But … we can do “spiritual adoration”–anywhere, anytime.( Including setting up our own “adoration chapel” — if only a labelled reces or chair — at home !) ”
The introspective life and soaking in God’s presence not only play a major role in the believer’s sanctity but likewise helps in the healing of damaged ardours. Teresa of Avila said, “Contemplative prayer is nothing else than a close sharing between friends; it conveys making time to be alone with him who we are familiar loves us.”
In the Holy Hour or in our “adoration chapel” at home, we are able to, by the eyes of faith or in our mind’s eye find the beloved eyes of Christ. For numerous from bad lineages and/ or who have had a string of bad affinities, this can exceedingly mending to the wounded spirit of rejection that they have sustained.
The terms of Zephaniah the prophet for Jerusalem and Zion are for us today, the New Jerusalem, and become ointment for the weave of abandonment: “Do not horror, Zion; do not let your hands hang move. The Lord your God is with you, the Mighty Warrior who saves. He will take huge delight in you; in his love he will no longer berate you, but will rejoice over you with singing”( Zeph. 3:16 b, 17 ).
Many practicing Catholics are intellectually catechized( they know the faith ), spiritually catechized( they have consistent devotional rehearsals ), but they aren’t emotionally catechized: topics from dysfunctional families of origin and past affinities continue to wreak havoc in their daily lives. As they follow Mary’s example and cuddle the contemplative life and spend time in his presence, may they meet the beloved gazes of Christ and confess “By his stripes we are healed! ”
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