Sunday, August 15, 2010
Happy Feast of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary (In Regards to Christians & Gossip)
So the title is pretty thorough today, as I will cover topics on the feast day of August 15th, which is the feast of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary, and how this feast can be applied to our everyday lives as Catholics & Christians. I was so very inspired today at mass---not only because I had to miss church last week for the vacation (+dun dun dun+ part 3 coming soon!), but also because I just needed time with my Lord in the Eucharist.
Now this one church I go to usually disappoints because the priest "does us a favor" by making his homilies super short (c'mon gimme the meat & potatoes! I want a long inspiring pep talk to marinade in all week :D) But today his sermon was quite deep and the whole time he spoke I was thinking "wow this will appeal to Catholic & Christian readers both...especially us lady folk!" And surprisingly so, as it is the feast of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary and thus the whole sermon revolved around...you guessed it...Mary, the controversial figure for many Protestants.
So I don't remember everything I wanted to write due to the fact I had to do some back to school shopping and then whip up some homemade veggie burgers (if they're good, I'll post the recipe). So in one of the readings from mass today (Luke 1:39-56 to be exact) we come across the magnificat in which Mary says:
"My soul magnifies the Lord, and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior,
for He has regarded the low estate of his handmaiden
For behold, henceforth all generations will call me blessed;
for He who is mighty has done great things for me, and holy is His name.
And His mercy is on those who fear Him from generation to generation.
He has shown strength with His arm, He has scattered the proud in the imagination of their hearts, He has put down the mighty from their thrones, and exalted those of low degree.
He has filled the empty with good things, and the rich He has sent empty away.
He has helped His servant Israel, in remembrance of His mercy, as He spoke to
our fathers, to Abraham and to his posterity forever."
Here we see that Mary was once an average Jewish woman, one we could call humble and lowly compared to others. By God's grace, he blessed her and made her great. Mary tells us that God will exalt all the faithful, of "low degree", who fear Him (not to the extent of Mary...she was the vessel to hold our Savior!) and bless us with "good things" out of His pure, abundant love & mercy. Tyrants & Kings have enormous amounts of power, they need not fear anyone. But the "lowly" recognize power and they fear the Lord, for who has more power than He? This promise is sort of a blessing in itself, as we followers in Christ now have a reason to hope & a reason to keep at this spiritual journey we are on...God will bless us if we do!
Now we are all sinners and we can all get on each other's nerves. Sometimes this leads us to gossip, and while gossip doesn't seem harmful, we must realize how much damage we are truly doing when we do not guard our tongues. When God distributes His blessings & gifts on the poor & lowly, He does so out of mercy, not because any one of us deserves it. We are exalted in Christ, yet gossip tears us down in the eyes of those listening. The person who gossips not only blinds himself to the goodness & blessings within the one he gossips about, but he also blinds his audience, those taking in the gossip (because those people now have tarnished view of that person). So as the priest explained, when you gossip, you rob your brothers and sisters in Christ of this promise & blessing Mary gave to the faithful followers of her Son. And consequently, through gossip, both parties are made poor and lowly again.
We need to stop trying to rob each other of our blessings...stop trying to destroy people with our words, even when they hurt us. Encourage each other and lift each other up rather than bring each other down. We are exalted by the Cross...the very sacrifice paid to save our souls. So honor that Cross and keep in mind Mary's words--God will have mercy if you fear Him and He will fill us with blessings and lift us up!
I hope your (feast) day is a blessed one!
Peace & Blessings be with you all,