Today’s Gospel: Luke 2:22-35
Imagine yourself at the Temple. I am struck by how amazed the Holy Family must have felt when they heard Simeon making proclamations to the Father about Jesus. Joy must have filled their hearts as they heard Simeon call Jesus, “a light for revelation to the Gentiles, and glory for your people Israel” (Luke 2:32)? I imagine them gently smiling upon their little newborn in Simeon’s arms. I imagine the love on their face.
However, what strikes me even more is the terror of hearing in the next breath that Jesus would be “destined for the fall and rise of many in Israel” (Luke 2:34). Furthermore, Mary herself would be pierced by a sword, “so the thoughts of many hearts may be revealed” (Luke 2:35). Imagine Mary, the joyful giver, the one who said “yes” to God hearing that she would suffer. This must have caused concern to pass over her face. Imagine Mary. She is at the Temple, offering her Son to the Father, and it is becoming clear that His work will be hard, will cause a division among men, and will mean suffering for them all. Is she still smiling? Despite how she might have been feeling, she takes her child home from the temple and raises Him, as she was called to do, as a mother. Imagine her lovingly walking with Jesus as He grows. Imagine her gazing upon Him.
What trust the Holy Family demonstrates in the Lord. After Simeon’s blessing and revelation, I would have been shaken. Terrified even. But, Mary, full of grace, lives her life blessed as Jesus’s mother, knowing that it will not be an easy life. And knowing that her own heart will be pierced in the time to come, for His sake. “Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never ends” (1 Corinthians 13:7-8). Mary loves Jesus and Mary loves God. Imagine the depth of her love. Imagine her faith. Nothing could be more painful than a mother watching her child be crucified. Nothing could prepare her for that pain, except for her faith. Her trust in the Lord is an amazing example of surrendering to God regardless of earthly joy or sorrow. He is with us through it all; we just have to say “yes.” Imagine what God can do with you, as His hands and feet, if you simply say “Thy will be done.” Imagine.
In joy or sorrow do you turn toward or away from God? How can you say “yes” to God regardless of your feelings? When you imagine being God’s hands and feet, what do you see?
Merciful Father, please surround us with your love today, whether we are at the height of joy or in the depths of sorrow. Help us to know that when we say “yes,” You will be with us through it all. Jesus, I trust in You. Through the unity with the Holy Spirit, all glory and honor is Yours, now and forever. Amen
Copyright 2017 Rhonda Vuch
Rhonda Vuch lives in beautiful Calgary, Alberta, Canada. She and her husband enjoy outdoor adventures with their son and their two dogs. They are blessed to be surrounded by tall mountains and a strong faith-filled community.
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