Saturday, September 10, 2016

Hope and Refuge in Life's Storms

St. Alphonsus observes that in all the events of Mary's life recorded in the Gospels, we find that she demonstrated a firm hope in God the Father and in her Son.

Mary showed her confident hope in God when she knew that the time for the birth of our Lord approached.

For she was driven from even the lodgings of the poor in Bethlehem, and obliged to bring forth her Son in a stable, "because there was no place for them in the inn" (Lk 2:7).

She didn't speak a single word of complaint.

Instead, abandoning herself to God, she trusted that he would assist her there.

The Mother of God also showed how great was her confident hope in Divine Providence when she received notice from St. Joseph that they must flee into Egypt.

On that very night she undertook a long journey to a strange and unknown country without provisions, without money, accompanied only by her infant Jesus and her poor spouse, who "rose and took the Child and his mother by night, and departed to Egypt" (Mt 2:14).

Yet even more did she show her confident hope when she asked her Son for wine at the marriage feast of Cana.

For when she had said, "They have no wine," Jesus answered her, "Woman, what have you to do with me? My hour has not yet come" (Jn 2:3–4).

This answer seemed to be a refusal.

But Mary had such great confidence in the divine goodness that she urged the servants to do whatever her Son told them, because she was certain that the favor would be granted (see Jn 2:5).

And indeed, it happened: Jesus Christ ordered the vessels to be filled with water, then changed it into wine.

Let's learn, then, from Mary to have the CONFIDENT HOPE in God that we should always have—especially in the great affair of our eternal salvation.

Though it's truly a matter in which we must cooperate, yet it's from God alone that we must hope for the grace necessary to obtain it.

We must put NO trust in our OWN strength, and say with the Apostle Paul:

"I can do all things through him who strengthens me" (Phil 4:13).

—St. Alphonsus Liguori, The Glories of Mary IN GOD'S PRESENCE,

CONSIDER . . . What is hope, and how does it differ from faith? In which areas of my life right now do I need most to imitate Mary's virtue of hope?


From a prayer of Pope St. John Paul II:

"Dawn of a new world, show yourself the Mother of Hope and watch over us!"


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