Saturday of the First Week of Advent
On this Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception, I was struck in the progression of the Mass readings by the beauty and goodness of God’s pursuit of our hearts. In the first reading, we hear about Adam and Eve breaking their relationship with God through their disobedience and breaking their relationship with each other in their attempt to pass along the blame. This reading leads into the second reading from Ephesians that acknowledges that we were made for more than the sin we brought into the world, because “he chose us in him, before the foundation of the world, to be holy and without blemish before him.” St. Paul reminds us in this letter that because of God’s desire for our holiness, He stepped in with a plan to bring us back to Him- “In love he destined us for adoption to himself through Jesus Christ.”
Our God is all-powerful, yet we hear in the Gospel today of the humble way in which He chose to bring His only Son into the world to save us. He prepared Mary as a pure vessel so that He might be able to put Himself into a little human family, coming to us as one that was small and meek. It is beautiful to me that this was accomplished through a simple woman that gave Him her yes amidst some fear and confusion (I imagine that getting told you will give birth to the Son of God has to be a little intimidating and raise some questions). I am in awe of the love and gentleness of the Father in enabling our adoption to Himself by becoming one of us, made possible through Mary’s trust in His plans. This also makes me wonder what works He could do in this world if I had a greater surrender to His plan for my life. Luckily, He has given us Mary as our spiritual mother who can walk beside us, praying for us to have the strength and grace to give Him our “yes” like she did.