As I was contemplating on what to write for a guest posting at These Stone Walls that appeared recently, I had many thoughts and wrote many drafts until finally settling on the version that was published.
The topic of the posting was my own Consecration to the Immaculate Heart of Mary, which I had completed earlier in the year, in part inspired by Father Gordon MacRae of These Stone Walls, and his cellmate and brother in the Lord, Pornchai Maximilian Moontri.
Father Gordon, in a recent posting wrote of the tapestry of our lives, particularly of Pornchai's in this instance. The image of a tapestry is a wonderful image for our lives, and I did expand on it from a personal perspective in my guest post linked above.
But, another image, more particularly of what Mary means to us in our lives of faith in Her Son Jesus Christ came to mind and I want to put it out there for you to ponder.
It starts from this line of scripture: "My soul doth magnify the Lord," which reminded me of a lighthouse. A lighthouse magnifies the light that is available to it. A small light is magnified greatly and is used to guide ships to safety. The lighthouse itself is the magnifier, not the particular source of the light. The candle or incandescent or other light that is in the center of the lighthouse is a light unto itself.
I have often prayed for Mary to place her mantle of protection over me or over others, and thought of it as sheltering from harm, but now I can see that sometimes it is not so much the sheltering as the magnifying of the light of Christ in us that saves the day or the circumstance.
Jesus is the Light of the World, and where was that light first found in human form? It was found within Mary, His Mother, from the moment of His Conception until His Birth. We see His light shining forth from Mary when she goes to visit with Elizabeth, the Mother of John the Baptist. When Mary calls out to Elizabeth, the baby in Elizabeth's womb leaps for joy in the womb, and Elizabeth calls Mary the Mother of her Savior. Elizabeth knows that Mary is the Mother of Our Lord, not the Lord herself, and this is always important for us to remember as well.
Often, non Catholics look upon Catholic devotion to Mary as a form of idolatry, and since most of us as Catholic Christians do not understand what we are doing either, we are unable to defend this love we have for the Mother of God made man, not for her on her own, but for and because of Him.
Mary is the perfect model for us of what Jesus told us about how He and the Father would make their dwelling in our hearts. If God dwells in you, can you hide the light? Could Mary? No, her soul magnified it, as we are called to do. Mary is not the light, but the light bearer.
So, for us Mary wants to magnify the light that is in us because nobody knows as well as she what that involves and what it takes. She has been there, done that, and has that wonderful blue mantle to show for it.