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Created for Glory!
Memorial of the Presentation of the Blessed Virgin Mary
Some Sadducees, those who deny that there is a resurrection, came forward and put this question to Jesus, saying, “Teacher, Moses wrote for us, If someone’s brother dies leaving a wife but no child, his brother must take the wife and raise up descendants for his brother. Now there were seven brothers; the first married a woman but died childless. Then the second and the third married her, and likewise all the seven died childless. Finally the woman also died. Now at the resurrection whose wife will that woman be? For all seven had been married to her.” Jesus said to them, “The children of this age marry and remarry; but those who are deemed worthy to attain to the coming age and to the resurrection of the dead neither marry nor are given in marriage. They can no longer die, for they are like angels; and they are the children of God because they are the ones who will rise. That the dead will rise even Moses made known in the passage about the bush, when he called ‘Lord’ the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob; and he is not God of the dead, but of the living, for to him all are alive.” Some of the scribes said in reply, “Teacher, you have answered well.” And they no longer dared to ask him anything.
Opening Prayer: Lord Jesus, teach me through your most holy and Blessed Mother Mary to love your will above all else on earth and attach my heart only to eternity, so as to enjoy eternal glory with you forever.
- Whose Wife?: It seems all too natural for us to get caught up with the concerns of this life. Worldly technicalities and preferences can bog us down so we stop focusing on eternal things. Mary’s presentation in the temple teaches us that the one thing that truly matters is surrendering our hearts and lives fully to the will of God as she did. Undue worry or anxiety can indicate that we have not completely given control to the Father. How often do I surrender my concerns to the Lord and then take them back by worrying?
- Like Angels: Jesus revealed to us how to truly understand eternity. He says we will be like the angels. What makes us like them? We will see God face to face. What makes us children of God? Baptism in Christ permanently transforms our very nature to make us heirs to the kingdom of the Father. Mother Mary lived a unique relationship with the Father her entire whole life. Since she had no sin, her greatest joy was to anticipate heaven because she knew the veils of this life would fall and we would see plainly. Do I appreciate the gift of eternal life? How often do I think about my eternal destiny?
- The God of the Living: People who fail to recognize the “God of the living” in our midst keep God at arm’s length or recalculate their concept of him depending on their current situation. They can easily fall prey to hopelessness. The true God, the Father revealed by the Incarnate Son of God, Jesus Christ, is the God of the living calling us into intimate communion through the gift of the Spirit. Mary lived with this sure knowledge and experience! Each day was a joy no matter what challenges presented themselves because she knew she was always accompanied by the Father. Do I walk with this same knowledge and assurance? Let’s ask Our Lady to pray that this grace increases in our life.
Conversing with Christ: Lord Jesus, with the help of your Blessed Mother, help me to live life in a way that allows me to love my life in this world because you are alive in me. You teach me not to attach my heart to earthly things and concerns, but to set my heart on eternity where I will one day see you face to face.
Resolution: Lord, today by your grace I will surrender my life into the hands of the merciful Father just as the Blessed Mother was presented to the Lord in her infancy, uniting myself to her maternal care.
Further Resources: Pray daily the Consecration Prayer which is offered in the book “33 Days to Morning Glory.
Father Todd Arsenault, LC, was ordained in 2005 and served for fourteen years in Ontario, Canada, as a spiritual director and retreat master. He recently moved to Rome to begin a two-year licentiate in Spiritual Theology.