The Word was made Flesh and dwelt among us! Each day when we pray the Angelus, we pray these extraordinary words; at 6.00am (the beginning of the day), 12.00pm (the middle of the day), and 6.00pm (the evening of the day).
Today we celebrate this, the greatest even in human history! God became man, he came amongst us in the fulfilment of the prophesy of Isaiah (7: 10 – 14). We are familiar with these words and the meaning of the name Emmanuel: God is with us!
Through Mary’s ‘yes’, our God is with us! The great God of the universe, the Creator of heaven and earth, chose to come among us, born of a maiden from Nazareth. Do we even realise the gravity of this truth we celebrate today?
God’s choice is to be with us, very ordinary humans, involved in the everyday stuff of life, experiencing hardships, struggles, difficulties, and confronting the challenges of life. Today he says, “I am with you always” (cf. Matthew 28:20). When all is said and done, this is where our God chooses to be, here in the trenches of life. He did not choose something grand and opulent, no blue-light brigades, no fancy clothing and magnificent feasts, no grand titles and thrones of power and control.
In a world turned mad by reality tv, greed, a lust for power and control, God chooses to be in the simple and humble, the very ordinary stuff of life. He chose Mary who would have been considered a very ordinary young woman preparing to begin her life as the wife of a carpenter, Joseph. Mary and Joseph were, however rich in faith, hope and trust. They taught the boy Jesus the faith they so dearly held on to, a way of life that valued each person regardless of status, position or wealth.
Through the Annunciation God lays down his way for us, his people. Lent reminds of the most valuable and important things in life. In this season of fasting and self-denial, we reconnect with our real self, stripped of the trappings and trimmings of life and focused on what really counts: faith, humility, sincerity, kindness, gentleness, hope and trust.
Ask yourself today: Who am I? Who or what I have I become?
We have wrapped ourselves with so many layers of life that we lose sight of who the real person is beneath the layers of wrapping. Lent invites us to unwrap ourselves from all these, and to wrap ourselves in faith – like the white garment of our Baptism which we will renew at Easter – or will we?
Pray the Angelus today and every day:
The Angel of the Lord declared unto Mary, And she conceived of the Holy Spirit.
Hail Mary … Behold the handmaid of the Lord. Be it done unto me according to Your Word. Hail Mary… And the Word was made flesh, And dwelt among us.
Hail Mary… Pray for us, O holy Mother of God. That we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ.
Let us pray: Pour forth, we beseech you O Lord, your Grace into our hearts; that we to whom the incarnation of Christ your Son was made known by the message of an angel, may by his passion and cross be brought to the glory of His Resurrection through the same Christ, our Lord. Amen.