“And Jesus calling unto Him a little child, set him in the midst of them, And said: Amen I say to you, unless you be converted, and become as little children, you shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven. Whosoever therefore shall humble himself as this little child, he is the greater in the kingdom of heaven.” (Matt. 18, 2-4)
A book I live with every day and cannot recommend highly enough is St. Maximilian Kolbe’s “Let Yourself Be Led By The Immaculate” by Angelus Press. Much of the following is from that book. In the comments on a recent post, I explained,
“To live our consecrations, we must let Our Lady lead us, that means accepting our daily crosses in generous reparation. St. Maximilian: “Everything depends on this, that in every instance, we let her lead us. The test is obedience. … Extraordinary prayers and mortifications are not necessary but just letting ourselves be led.” You see, it’s very simple, that’s why people resist it so. Even a child, such as Jacinta can do it, which is why so many overlook it or ignore it.
In surrendering our wills to the Immaculata, in even very small things, we accomplish at the same time, reparation, humility and obedience. Thus, surrendering our wills to her is the most effective and fruitful form of reparation. And it is within our means. By our First Saturdays of reparation, Our Lady is leading us to learn the habit of consecrating all our moments into saving moments, shining with grace, which, when united with our prayers, will in time, transform the world. We are all impatient to see God’s justice but if we do not make reparation, we might find that justice is a very sharp sword.”
By our reparation, by penance and a contrite, humble heart, we pay homage to God’s justice. In fact, to seek mercy without justice is to deeply offend the Blessed Virgin, to whom God has entrusted His mercy. St. Maximilian tells us, “St. Bernard affirms that God has reserved for Himself the economy of justice, while He has confided mercy to the most holy Virgin Mary.”
He explains that the Immaculata is the very personification of the mercy of God and that insofar as we are instruments in her hand (that is, totally consecrated in obedience to her) we are serving the will of God, which is love. St. Maximilian then goes further, explaining, “The perfection of obedience is the essence of love.” This love is not mere sentiment, which is a passing thing, and can often deceive us. Much more than sentiment, this supernatural love is nothing less than the fusion of our will with the will of the Immaculate Mother of God, thus, it is a supernatural obedience.
By our obedience to Our Lady, giving up at every moment our wills, surrendering to her all things, we achieve that perfect love, which is evident in total obedience, and this is the surest, quickest way to sanctity, particularly in these dark and confused times. Every one of us, in times of crisis, tends to fall into subjective sentiment or fall back on “objective reasoning” which actually in practice often means our own opinions. It is often through our intellects that satan leads us astray, into forming factions, splitting into ever smaller splinter groups. Just look at the sad state of the Church today – And even traditional Catholics are plagued with this. If we use our intellects as our main tool to survive these days, we will spend much time and effort bickering among the blogs and forums and social media sites, always seeking for more “information” never nourishing our souls in quiet union with the Immaculata who leads us to true wisdom.
The reparation that Our Blessed Mother leads us to, is to forego our “need to know” and thus, our need to defend our own intellectual opinions, the “righteousness” of our particular take on the faith. Forego all that, let it go and spend time with her, meditating on her sacred mysteries in the Rosary. Through this, we gradually develop a sense of her will. You tell me, “Oh but my mind wanders, and I cannot settle down to pray.” Yes, of course! You have become used to gluing yourself to the flickering screens of smart phones, ipads, laptops and so on. Flitting from tidbit to tidbit, never any depth. Losing wisdom in vain knowledge. But as you return to her, each time you return humbled by your failings, there is much merit and almost without your knowing it, you are being drawn to her.
Our Lady knows supernatural obedience and she is our best and most patient teacher. As St. Maximilian says, “She herself will obtain and give you the strength to advance on this road; more, as the best of mothers, she will carry you most securely in her arms, pressing you lovingly to her Immaculate Heart in the most difficult passages of the way.”
Once we understand that true reparation consists of obedience to the will of our Immaculate Mother, offering all to Jesus through her, progress then is sure and very simple. Even a child can do it, “for of such is the kingdom of heaven.”
Until the next time, may Our Mother keep you close to her Immaculate Heart!
Sweetest, purest Heart of Mary, be our salvation! Lead us to the Sacred Heart of thy dear Son!
Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, I implore, that I may ever love Thee, more and more!
St. Joseph, chaste guardian of the Holy Family, protect our family!
St. Michael the Archangel, defend us in battle.
Remember, pray the rosary and confound the devil!
~ by evensong, for love of the Immaculata.