God still loves the world...

LENT 2020 – Day 29


Is 7: 10-14; Ps 39:7-8a, 8b-9, 10-11; Heb 10: 4-10; Lk 1: 26-38

In the midst of the austerity of the Lenten season, there comes a text which has the freshness of morning dew: “Behold, a young woman shall conceive.” It is Isaiah (7th century before Christ) speaking to the faithless king Ahaz of the House of David. It is one of the most celebrated of the Biblical texts. Taken from the Book of Consolation or Book of Emmanuel, it is so called because God consoles His people. He promises them liberation from Babylon and the arrival of a Messiah.

When it was finally time for the prophecy to come about, the Angel Gabriel announced to the Virgin Mary: “Behold, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son.” Do we appreciate Mary's predicament well enough? As we know, that reserved maiden responded positively to God’s call. She always delighted in His law and discerned his ways. In her quiet way, she proclaimed the wonders of the Lord, His love and His truth.

It must have been truly consoling to know that God-With-Us would walk the earth. He would make known to mortals the plan of Salvation. The people had a lot to atone for, but animal sacrifice was not the solution. Hence Jesus Christ offered Himself up as a sacrifice, to take away sins and sanctify humankind “once and for all”.

“Once and for all” is not to be taken as licence to breach God’s law and yet expect to be saved. We can well lose our salvation if we wilfully go back on it. Let’s therefore take the safest path: to emulate Mary in her qualities of faith, humility, trust, obedience, piety, thoughtfulness, discernment, perseverance grace, holiness. She is a sea of virtue and the surest way to Our Lord Jesus Christ.

On the Feast of the Annunciation of Our Lord’s Incarnation, let us very especially keep in mind all expectant mothers. For sure, in their motherly love they will make little of these sombre times, for every baby that comes into the world brings the good news that God still loves the world.