Our Lady and St. Juan Diego

Our Lady and St. Juan Diego

Friday, September 5, 2014

Entrustment to Mary Does NOT = Being Free from Trials

A common misconception I’ve run across is that if you are entrusted to Blessed Mother it means your life will begin to look prefect and trials will cease to exist. I lived with that way of thinking for a long time. When bad things happened in my life, or to those around me, I would think “if only I stayed in MOM’s arms more,” or “if only that person entrusted themselves to Mary.” But is this really true? Am I really running from Mary’s arms when I encounter trials? Is it Mary’s role to work like a magic genie in my life, taking away all bad things?

Looking at the life of St. Peter this week has helped me to realize that God is still with me when I fall or fail at something. In fact, He even predicts and warns me when it might happen. Last Sunday’s Gospel was when Jesus had to say to Peter: “Get behind me, Satan! You are an obstacle to me. You are thinking not as God does, but as human beings do”(Mt 16:23). Jesus was right there with Peter when this happened. Peter faced our LORD and thought as a human being. At the last supper Jesus predicted Peter would deny him…and Peter did. Wasn’t this the grace for Peter? Wasn’t Jesus, who loved him fully, trying to help Peter live a deeper calling?

Meditating on Peter’s journey is helping me to realize that Jesus and Mary do not have the same expectations of me that I have. I am the one who lives in this illusion that I won’t fall or experience injustice as a Christian. This illusion is why I am constantly disappointed and anxious about my life. This week, I have several emergency-type deadlines and in addition, I am empathizing with multiple friends whose lives are truly in trial mode. Everything in me wants to allow myself to wallow in anxiety and justify lethargy as a solution to escape the responsibilities. But to be a Christian isn’t about removing it so I can function. It is about functioning while living it. I’m discovering that living in the Arms of Mary isn’t about being free of these things; it is about learning to know myself and coming to expect my falls and the injustices all around me. It is about becoming small enough to call out for the miracles and rely more on Christ’s power than my own.

"Peter said, ‘I have neither silver nor gold, but what I do have I give you: in the name of Jesus Christ the Nazorean, [rise and] walk’” (Acts 3:6).

Peter spent three years with Jesus, who helped Peter learn how God truly loved him for who he was, not for any false perfection. In turn, Peter became convinced of this truth so that he realized he was never apart from Christ, which in turn enabled him to give Christ to others. I believe this is my journey too. My entrustment to Blessed Mother is helping me to live in the truth of who I am and who God really loves – and more importantly, HOW God really loves. I don’t think I can truly desire pure love for others until I experience this true love – and that is what Blessed Mother’s arms are helping me with. My entrustment is helping me to utilize my trials for a greater good – to reach out to others that they might know THE True Love.

"During our storms and our trials of faith, we must also never forget about the continuous presence of Mary who is close to us as the Mother of our abandonment to God. Let us ask her to allow us to share in her abandonment to God, so that we may stop trusting ourselves, things, and people, and that we may perceive the continuous presence of her son who is close to us and is our only security. We ask Mary that, following her example, we trust exclusively in the Lord: Mother of Great Abandonment, I offer myself to you without reservation – to the end." (Tadeusz Dajczer, The Gift of Faith, 3rd. ed. [Ft. Collins, CO: IAMF, 2012], 125-126.)

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