Week 3, Day 2
Remember, O most gracious Virgin Mary, that never was it known
that anyone who fled to thy protection, implored thy help, or sought thine intercession was left unaided.
Inspired by this confidence, I fly unto thee, O Virgin of virgins, my mother;
to thee do I come, before thee I stand, sinful and sorrowful.
O Mother of the Word Incarnate, despise not my petitions, but in thy mercy hear and answer me.
Mary, Compassionate Mother
Scripture reading from the Gospel of Luke 22:39-44 – Not my will, but thy will be done
What do many Christians do to respond to the Lord’s request to “Rise and Pray”, and perhaps make up for the Apostle’s sleepiness in this passage? Spend an hour in adoration with the Lord.
Suffering in Love
No one likes suffering; most people try to avoid it at all costs. We often pray as Jesus did in the Garden, “if possible, please let this cup (suffering) pass.” But sometimes it is a little hard to unite ourselves completely to Christ and finish the prayer as he did with, “but not my will, but thy will be done.”
Perhaps Jesus’ prayer was asking that this cup, his suffering, be his alone. As a good son, he probably didn’t want his mother to have to see him suffer and thus suffer herself. Jesus wanted to glorify God and to save us from the power of sin. He could have done it all by himself, but the Father had other plans. Mary’s suffering through the passion of Jesus brought her very close to the heart of her son. She shared in his intense suffering and her heart was enlarged to love even more with the love of God.
What is the value in our suffering? No one wishes to suffer, but we will suffer in this life. It has value, and that value is to bring us closer to God our Father, so that we can love as He loves. Jesus suffered, and through his suffering he saved the world from the power of sin. St. Paul tells us that through our suffering, we make up for what is lacking in the sufferings of Christ (Colossians 1:24). This is a mystery, but it is God’s plan for our salvation. Suffering is a gift from God for our own good. We can choose to accept this gift, or reject it. Jesus chose to accept it and we should too.
When we love, we forget ourselves, we go beyond our sufferings, and we are transformed by love. Love is powerful, and love is the source of our strength. We need this strength to see us through the greatest tragedies and sufferings that we will encounter in our lives. God is Love, and the more we love, the closer we are to God.
Think of a time when you have been very sad because you were sick or someone you loved was very sick or even died. What helped you make it through that rough time? Was it easy? Were you able to help those you love when they were sad or suffering?
Daily Practice this week
This week we offer up some small sacrifice at least 3 times each day.
Most compassionate Father, by your will your Son was plunged into the depths of human misery. At the foot of the cross, Mary, having received everything from you, surrendered everything back into your hands. She heard your Son cry out in thirst. May she help us hear in Jesus’ cry of thirst, his thirst for our love. Through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
Christ has Conquered Death
Reflection based on Totus Tuus: A Contemplative Approach to Total Consecration to Jesus through Mary, edited by Fr. Nathan Cromly.