Reply To: Sunday December 20: May It Be Done To Me … I Consent

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Posted by steve_regnier_gmail_com on December 20, 2020 at 3:45 pm #110624

Here are some comments I shared with a friend on the readings from today that I thought others might enjoy.

So much beautiful material to work with this morning.

The main thrust of the readings this morning center around Mary being asked to bring the savior into the world.   The Give Us this Day reflection (Sr. Maria Boulding, The Coming of God) was packed with meaning..    “Mary’s virginity at the time of the Annunciation is poverty and emptiness.”    This poverty and emptiness got everything out of the way that could have impeded her being able to say yes and for God to enter in her life.  Henry Nouwen had a beautiful passage this morning that speaks of how we stay open to saying “yes” and stay real before our God.

“The root choice is to trust at all times that God is with you and will give you what you most need. . . . God says to you, “I love you. I am with you. I want to see you come closer to me and experience the joy and peace of my presence. I want to give you a new heart and a new spirit. I want you to speak with my mouth, see with my eyes, hear with my ears, touch with my hands. All that is mine is yours. Just trust me and let me be your God.”

Wow!  “The humility of God is devastating”.    I think what she was getting at here is that the God of the universe, the One who made everything, is placing His plans in the decision of a young virgin to say yes or no.   He risked the “no” for us, and this also shows His great love, for He could have just gone ahead with His plans without her consent, but that is not love, but only a puppeteer controlling his puppet.  Love requires free will and choice, and that was exactly what God allowed, which required emptying Himself totally of being God, just as He did on the cross…..for us.

“Where human resources, human potency, human self-sufficiency are lacking, but there is humble, hopeful faith, Love gives itself finally and utterly.”   We do not have to be perfect, as a matter of fact, perfection locks God out, because we try to become God, which can only lead to devastation, which this past year has shown within the political world where people who want to be God were running the show. The first reading comically displayed this theme, for God is giggling at the notion that David was going to build a house for Him.  Really!   God then showed all the ways He produced the foundations that paved the pathway for David and that He was going to build a house for David, and us, in the womb of Mary and in our hearts. Surprise! There is that word again…humble….which implies living from the reality of the best of who we are, which includes our weaknesses and gifts.    That is the pure place where love can easily impregnate and grow within us.  Part of me wishes Mary would have written a “how to” manual, but she had the same material we do, the scriptures, each other, the church, ordinary daily life, creation, etc.   We are given a lifetime where love and life carves away at that which is false and allows the real us to emerge and become ever more fertile to the impregnation of God into our hearts.

Let’s tune all of our senses into the empty crib (or feeding trowel) of the manger scene, and trust and wonder at the ways that God will arrive in our hearts this Christmas.