(c)Mateo Ivankovic 2018

February 27, 2018

Dear Family of Mary!

“Dear children! In this time of grace, I am calling all of you to open yourselves and to live the commandments which God has given you, that they may lead you through the Sacraments on the way of conversion. The world and worldly temptations are testing you, but you, little children, look at God’s creatures which He has given to you in beauty and humility and, little children, love God above everything and He will lead you on the way of salvation. Thank you for having responded to my call.” (February 25, 2018)

“In this time of grace, I am calling all of you to open yourselves…”

“In this time of grace….” Lent is a time of grace. The Church has declared that Lent is to be set aside as a time of prayer, fasting and alms giving. It is a time for silence and prayer, a time when we look deeply into our hearts and clean out all that doesn’t belong in them. All attachments and inordinate desires. A time of cleansing and getting back to the basics of the spiritual life. It is also a time of fasting, which draws us ever closer to God through renunciation. And alms giving is the true test of our detachment from material things, of learning to care for others. Yes, Lent is a time of grace!

But there is also a sense of timeliness in these days, because Our Lady is with us. Every time she tells us we are in a time of grace, I think about the fact that Mary, the Mother of God, has said so! She is with us for a time. This is that time, and it is indeed a time of grace!

“I am calling all of you to open yourselves…” Our Lady often asks us to open ourselves. The phrase can go by unnoticed! But if she says it often, it is because it is important. What are we opening ourselves to? The universe? New ideas? Therapies? No, Our Lady would not ask us to open to such things. She is surely asking us to open ourselves to God. Think of how she did just that at the Annunciation! With perfect presence of mind, in a state of receptivity and thoughtfulness, Our Lady opened herself to the Angel Gabriel, who was bringing her the message of God. That must be what she is getting at. We need to open ourselves to God, to his action in our lives, to His presence, to His love, to His will, His plan for our lives.

Jesus wants us to open the doors of our hearts to Him. Jesus said to us in Revelations: “Behold, I stand at the door and knock; if any one hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and eat with him, and he with me.” (Rev 3:20) Jesus wants to come into our hearts in order to commune with us. He wants to be one with us, to give Himself to us, in our hearts, if we open up to Him. This is the opening of ourselves that Our Lady desires.

So in this time of grace, Jesus is going to be knocking at the doors of our hearts. If we choose to pray, to be silent and seek the Lord, He will come. But it takes from us an attitude of trust and faith. Again I think of Our Lady at the Annunciation. She trusted God. She was surrendered to Him. Once she heard the invitation and tested it, she immediately said, “Be it done unto me according to your word.” She wants to fill us with her faith and trust so that we will be able to open up to the Lord, hear His knock, respond to His call, and be led by Him into His plan.

So, may we all find time to experience this “time of grace”!! May we choose to pray, choose to fast, and empty ourselves through alms giving, so that we will be ready to hear the knock and open the door of our hearts to Jesus, our Savior!

In Jesus, Mary and Joseph!

Cathy Nolan

©Mary TV 2018