The Marian Life
Presence of God – O Mary, I wish to live with you as a child with its mother.
The high place which Mary, as the Mother of God, occupies in the work of our sanctification fully justifies our desire to live intimately with her. As children love to be near their mother, so we as Christians want to live with Mary, and in order to do this, we resort to little means of keeping her in our thoughts. For instance, we may have her picture before us and greet her affectionately every time we look at it. Then, with a glance of faith, we can go beyond the picture, and reach Mary living in glory, Mary who, by means of the Beatific Vision, sees us, follows us, knows all our needs, and helps us with her maternal aid. By means of this our faith, our soul remains in continual contact with Mary. Spontaneously throughout the day, we increase our little pious practices in her honor, our prayers and ejaculations [also known as aspirations]; all these combine to intensify our relations with Mary. Saturdays, the month of May, the several feasts of Mary are for us so many occasions of remembering her especially, of meditating on her prerogatives, contemplating her beauty, and continually increasing our love for her. In fact, it is impossible to bear the sweet picture of Mary in our mind and heart without feeling moved to love her, without feeling the need of showing her the reality of our love by trying to please her, that is, by living like true children of hers. In this way the “Marian” life, or the life of intimacy with Mary, can penetrate the whole of our “Christian” life and make us more faithful in the fulfillment of all our duties, for nothing can please Mary more than to see us accomplishing with love her Son’s will. Furthermore, Christian life lived under Mary’s maternal eye acquires that special gentleness and sweetness which arise spontaneously from the constant companionship of a most loving Mother who lavishes attention on us.
“O my most sweet Mother, you call me and say to me: ‘If anyone is a little one, let him come to me.’ Children always have their mother’s name on their lips, and they call her whenever they are in danger, fright, or difficulty. O sweet Mother, O loving Mother, you want me, like a little child, to call upon you always and to have unceasing recourse to you…. Permit me then to invoke you constantly and to say: ‘O Mother, loving Mother!’ Your name consoles me, moves me tenderly, and reminds me of my obligation to love you. Your name encourages me to confide myself to you. ‘My Mother,’ thus I call you, and thus I want to call you always. After God, you are my hope, my refuge, and my love in this vale of tears. O my sweet Lady and Mother! by the love you show your children you ravish their hearts. Ravish also, I beg you, my poor heart which so greatly desires to love you. You, O Mother, charmed God with your beauty, and drew Him from heaven into your womb; and I, shall I live and not love you? No, I shall have no rest without the assurance that I have a true love for you, my Mother, a constant, tender love. Yes, I want to love you, O sweet Mother, but I fear, at the same time, that I do not love you, for I have heard it said that love makes a lover resemble the loved one…. I know how different I am from you! Could this be a sign that I do not love you? You are so pure, and I so impure! You are so humble, and I am so proud! You are so holy, and I so wicked! But this is what you ought to do, O Mary, since you love me: make me like you. You have the power to change hearts; then take mine and transform it. Show all the world how great is your power in favor of those you love! Sanctify me and make me worthy of being your child” (cf. St. Alphonsus).
Note from Dan: This post on the Marian life is provided courtesy of Baronius Press and contains one of two meditations for the day. If you would like to get the full meditation from one of the best daily meditation works ever compiled, you can learn more here: Divine Intimacy. Please honor those who support us by purchasing and promoting their products.
Art for this post on the Marian life: Madonna painted by Alfonso Maria de’ Liguori, saint, St. Alphonsus Maria de Liguori, circa 1718, PD-US copyright term of life 100 years or less, Wikimedia Commons. Father Gabriel of St. Mary Magdalen, mirror from open source material.