Tuesday, December 21, 2010

The Last Week of Advent - December 21st

Today we find the Visitation of Mary to Elizabeth in our gospel for Mass.  Notice the dynamic at work, Mary goes to Elizabeth, the mother of God to the mother of the forerunner, the greater goes to the lesser.  Even Elizabeth herself acknowledges how out of place this all seems when, under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, she says, "And how does this happen to me, that the mother of my Lord should come to me?"  But isn't this the perfect symbol of what God was doing at that moment, the Incarnation had just happened a short while before, in Mary's womb, God had come to us, the great God to the creatures he had made from the dust of the earth.  God still comes to us even now, most especially in the Holy Eucharist, but he comes in other ways too.  Whenever we go to pray, pick up a prayer book, pick up a bible to read and meditate, go to the church to visit Christ in the Blessed Sacrament, it may seem as though we are the initiators, that we are the ones going to God, but not so.  God comes to us first, he tugs on our heart to inspire us to pick up that book, or to make that visit to the church.  In theological language we call that 'prevenient grace'.  Whenever you feel that tug on your heart, that inspiration to pray, it is God coming to you at that moment, don't ignore him, just marvel at how this happens, that the Lord should come to us, his unworthy creatures.

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