According to the words of Pope Pius XI, “Each mother feels a delight when she sees the face of her child reflecting one or another characteristic of her own face. In the same way, Mary, our Mother, has no greater desire nor joy then to see the qualities and the virtues of her soul in the thoughts, words and deeds of those, whom she received for her own children at the foot of the Cross of her only begotten Son.”
Looking at Mary, we are encouraged by the hope that we shall also be there one day, where she already is. She is our pride. One of us has arrived so high! This is why we have to invoke Mary. Our devotion to Mary is justified. This is what God desires, what Jesus encourages and what the Church keeps and defends faithfully. Do not be afraid to take Mary by the hand! Joseph was also afraid, but an angel appeared to him in his dream and told him: “Joseph, son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary, your wife, into your home. For it is through the Holy Spirit that this child has been conceived in her.” (Mt 1,20) Do not be afraid to take Mary as your mother, your intercessor, your advocate and your friend, because what happens in the Church, and in Medjugorje, comes from the Holy Spirit. Let us learn from her how to pray, how to be freed from doubts, complexes, addictions, sin, lukewarmness, and from a superficial Christianity, a Christianity which begins and ends with the Sunday Mass. Who loves Jesus will come to love Mary. Who turns to Mary will be led to Jesus, because Mary has received a special charisma, the gift to lead us to Jesus. Without Jesus, Mary is a simple woman, like all the other women of the world. In Him and through Him, she is the Queen of the world and the Queen of peace.
Today again, she tells us that we live in a time of grace, a time of the favour of God. God is favourable to us, and Gospa tells us that we have to be favourable to Him, and to come even closer to God through our personal prayer, our personal ‘Yes’, our personal choice to follow Him.
Make good use of the time of rest, Mary tells us, Mary, our Mother. We all want to take rest; we all have right to take rest. We want to leave our daily work, obligations and burdens. Maybe we do it, but we come back more tired and more burdened. Our body cannot find rest if our soul is burdened, if our conscience is stained and trampled down by sin, if we live in conflict with our neighbour, if we carry within us the burden of unforgiveness and of hatred, if we live unreconciled with ourselves, with God and with others… Our body is tense, our blood pressure is high, and nervousness and anguish dominate even our subconscience and take away our peace and our rest.
In God alone I find peace for my soul, only in Him my hope and my salvation, sings the psalmist. The most beautiful rest is in God, because in the end, only God gives rest for the soul and for the body. We have to break through to God, we have to strive to reach Him, we have to open our eyes. This is why our Lady calls us: find peace in nature. The nature is the book of God written by His own hand. May we know how to admire His works and may we never cease to be astonished by the beauties which we find within our reach. Let us recognize God in the smile of a child and in the flight of a bird, in the murmur of the sea and in the high mountain. All this speaks to us about Him.
Nature is not a work of men; this is why we have to explore it, to question it and to admire it. When we cease to admire, we cease to live. When we say to someone: “I know you!”, we have ceased to explore, to admire and to love this person. We have then not only killed this person within ourselves, but we have also mutilated ourselves. But man and nature can never be definitely explored, they are inexhaustible, as God is inexhaustible in the richness of His peace and His love.
Let us listen to the voice of Our Lady within us. Let our eyes be opened to the marvellous deeds of God, so that we may find rest for our souls and for our bodies.
Medjugorje, July 26, 2001
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