(Lk. 2:41-52) READ AND PRAY OVER THIS
When Jesus was twelve years old an
incident occurred in the life of Mary and Saint Joseph that caused them much
suffering and deep pondering. “Mary for
her part pondered these things in her heart.”
JERUSALEM AND RELIGIOUS FEASTS. It was the custom of Jesus, Mary and Saint
Joseph to visit the city of Jerusalem and especially the majestic Temple Of
Jerusalem on important Feast days—especially the Feast day of Passover.
RETURN AND PAINFUL SURPRISE. After the Holy Family had finished their
visit to Jerusalem and upon returning to Nazareth, after a day’s journey both
Saint Joseph and Our Lady, to their great surprise and sorrow, recognized that
Jesus was lost!
How this losing of Jesus came about was indeed a great mystery!
Mysteries? How many times does God
visit us with mysteries and sometimes very painful mysteries that really do not
seem to make any sense whatsoever. Sometimes these mysteries perhaps have
brought us to even question God’s providential design in our lives. Our Lady
suffered and struggled through this mystery of losing Jesus. Why not turn to Our Lady with the many surprising
and sometimes painful mysteries of your life. Talk freely and intimately with
Our Lady about your own painful mysteries. Our Lady is the best of listeners,
never in a hurry, and can understand your heart better than you can understand
LOST AND FOUND. After three days of
painful and sorrowful search Our Lady and Saint Joseph finally find Jesus. These have been among the most painful three
days in the life of Mary as well as of Saint Joseph. How could this have
happened? A real mystery!
THE TEMPLE. They find Jesus in the Temple of Jerusalem.
He is in the midst of the Doctors of the law both listening to them and asking
them questions. Remember, that Jesus is only twelve years of age! Never have
these Doctors of the law met anyone so young, humble, but as brilliant as this
TEACHER. Already Jesus presents Himself as a TEACHER,
even at this very young age! Mary and Saint Joseph come on the scene and Our
Lady speaks to Jesus in these words: “Son, why have you done this to use. Behold,
your father and I have been seeking for you in sorrow.” Jesus responds with these mysterious words: “Why were you seeking for me? Did you not
know that I had to be about my Father’s business?”
MYSTERY. Both Our Lady and Saint Joseph did not
understand the Words of Jesus; they were clouded in mystery. Once again dig into the depths of your heart
and discover the many mysteries that you have had to encounter in your life and
bring these to Our Lady and enter into a deep and trusting conversation with
her. Our Lady is longing to listen to you, understand you, and console you as
well as to comfort you. Even though
these mysteries may not have an easy solution, sharing them with Our Lady can
be of extraordinary consolation! Open up your heart and speak to Our Lady as a
little child would speak to her mother. Indeed Mary is the Mother of God, the
Mother of the Church, but she is always your mother. Our Lady in Mexico reassured Saint Juan
Diego: “Do not be afraid. Am I not your Mother? You are in the crossing of my
arms; you are in my shadow; you are in my apron (tilma) the covering over my
MYSTERIES IN OUR LIFE. What might be some of the painful moments and
mysteries in our life? Physical pain and sufferings, diseases, the loss and
death of a loved one, the loss of a job.
The Mystery might be the loss of a son or daughter to drugs or
drinking. The painful mystery might be
the loss of a son or daughter to religion—they have lost their faith in God and
are wandering through life without any meaning. One’s spouse! Maybe you lost
your spouse through death, or due to unfaithfulness and a painful separation.
These painful memories and mysteries in life we should not keep to ourselves but
bring them to Our Lady. Indeed an integral part of our consecration
to Our Lady is the trust in her and the willingness to tell her all that is
going on in our lives—even the most painful mysteries that we have been hiding
for possibly many years!
JESUS’ OBEDIENCE AND GROWTH. The Evangelist concludes by describing the
Child Jesus, the Son of Mary. “Jesus for His part was submissive (obedient
to them) and He grew in wisdom, knowledge, and grace before God and man.”
There is much here that we can bring to Our Lady and converse with her about!
OBEDIENCE. Let us turn to Our Lady and beg her for the
grace to be obedient as Jesus was to her and Saint Joseph. A rebellious, proud
and disobedient spirit is repugnant to God. However, a humble, submissive and
docile spirit is very pleasing to God. Let us beg Our Lady to help us to obey
the Word of God, the Catholic Church, the Ten Commandments, a well-formed
conscience, as well as the inspirations of the Holy Spirit.
WISDOM. One of the many mystical and
poetical titles for Our Lady is “Seat of Wisdom”. Wisdom indeed is the greatest
of all of the Gifts of the Holy Spirit.
Wisdom defined is to relish the things of God. Jesus taught us in these
words: “Seek first the Kingdom of God and
His righteousness and everything else will be given to you besides.” Talk
to Our Lady and beg her for an ever deep and dynamic Gift of Wisdom in your heart
SEARCH FOR JESUS. As Our Lady was
pursuing and searching for Jesus during the course of three long days, in
imitation of Mary may we always be in pursuit of getting to know Jesus better,
love Him more ardently and be willing to follow Him more closely. True joy and
happiness, Our Lady teaches us, is in knowing, loving and serving Jesus Our
Lord, God and Savior.
FROM SIN TO GRACE. If we have had the
misfortune of losing Jesus in the depths of our heart due to committing a
mortal sin, may we never despair! On the contrary, may we return to Jesus
through prayer, penance, the Sacrament of Confession and a total trust in Jesus’
infinite Mercy. “JESUS, SON OF MARY, I
TRUST IN YOU!!!”
SPIRITUAL GROWTH. As Jesus grew in wisdom, knowledge and grace
before God and man, daily before the loving and watchful eyes of Our Lady, so
may we grow spiritually. How? Like Our Lady, may we sit at the feet of Jesus
who is our Master and Teacher and be ready and willing to learn. Jesus, Son of Mary, speak, your servant is