Saying Yes to God: The Presentation of the Blessed virgin Mary ~ The Very Rev. Lady Sherwood, OPI

Liturgical colour: White.

Reading 1RV 4:1-11

Responsorial Psalm: PS 150:1B-2, 3-4, 5-6

Holy Gospel:LK 19:11-28

Today we commemorate the day, at only the tender age of 3 years old, when St. Joachim and St. Anne, out of thanks to God for their daughter, Mary, who they had late in life, dedicated their only child to the service of God, by presenting her to the temple in Jerusalem.  Mary would live in the temple, she would pray, read the Holy word of God, and would assist the High priest in certain ways. It was usual in those days, for the first born son of a family to be presented to the temple, but as females were often then seen as being insignificant,  or second class citizens, this was unique,it showed that Mary had already been ‘set apart  by God, for her future role as the chosen one to be the Mother of our Lord Jesus Christ,  when he was to be born and to live on earth amongst us. Mary served in the chapel always with a spirit of faithful rejoicing.

From such a tender age, the faith of Mary was evident. Even at such a young age as she was, Mary said yes to God, just as she did throughout her life, accepting the Will of God for her life, and joyfully becoming the earthly mother of Our Lord Jesus Christ. As we are adopted children of God our Father, and as such Jesus’ brothers and sisters, and co=heirs of Our Lord, Mary has also become our mother.

Mary is the perfect example of true devoted faithfulness, and we ought also to strive within our lives, to say yes to the Will of God in our lives. Like Mary, we should always strive to live our lives totally devoted to God and His will for us, and to say yes, with rejoicing, just as Mary did.

Here are some examples of how we can follow the example of Mary within our lives:

  1. Saying yes.

In Scripture, Mary’s story starts with her “yes” to God. It was an affirmative charged with plenty of questions, but she gave her assent to God.

What is God asking us to say “yes” to within our lives? What is that thing that seems difficult, scary, or even downright crazy to us that God keeps placing on our hearts? Is it a vocation in ministry perhaps, or maybe it’s a career change? Maybe we are being asked to move across the country, or even to changing countries all together?

We need to ask ourselves what God might be asking for us to do in our lives to fulfil his Will, and then to work on finding the courage to say “yes” to His will for our individual lives.

  1. Being  humble.

Where is God asking us to be more humble in our lives? It might look like doing a terrible chore (cleaning the cooker, doing dishes, maybe doing laundry), that no one else will notice, without us mentioning it. It might be holding our tongues, when we want to defend ourselves by speaking up when we are hurt by others. It might  simply just mean smiling when someone gives you a compliment and saying thank you.

Mary gave us an example of a perfect humility so we can turn to her as an excellent example to strive for, when we struggle in our lives.

  1. Sharing our love and joy with others.

Sometimes we can find it difficult to share in others’ joy when we’re hurting. Or we are hesitant to celebrate with others because we’re afraid they’ll think we are bragging about the good happening to us. Sometimes, we are less loving with othwe ought to be.

But to hide away our love and joy is to hide away the best parts of what makes us human. God made us to know love, sorrow and joy, and to experience these things in our community.

Mary is the perfect person to help us be courageous in sharing our  love and joy.

  1. Being confident in prayer.

Are we that confident in our prayer? Do we bring our troubles to our Lord Jesus and then leave them at His feet, believing that He’ll take care of them? What about in all aspects of our lives? Do we hang back from asking for what we want at work, at home, or with our friends because we’re scared someone will say no or we’ll be disappointed?

Let us pray for Mary’s intercession to be bold with our prayers and with our hopes. Jesus never lets us down!!

Let us pray:

Father,

Give us a heart like the Mary’s, willing to agree with Your Word, Your promises, and Your intent for our life. With Mary there was no negotiating, no hemming or hawing, no 24 hours to think about it, no keeping her options open. You simply spoke, and she unhesitatingly responded with a Yes.

You have an intent for us. That purpose will have its challenges, its high points and low points, its joys and sorrows, but Your plan is far and above the best plan for our short earthly life. May our soul be transformed into one that instantly obeys you, comes when You call, follows your lead, and believes Your Word even when we can’t fully comprehend it, for Your Word is Truth.

In Jesus’ Name Amen

 

 

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