33 Days to Morning Glory, Day 6

Should We Really Give Mary Everything? (Part Two)

Okay, so yesterday we looked at how, when we fully consecrate ourselves to Mary, we give up the right to distribute the grace of our prayers and merits to others. But we saw that it all works out even better in the end. Now, today, we turn to ourselves. Isn't it crazy to give to Mary all the value of our good actions and prayers and so appear before God with empty hands? No, it's not crazy. Remember, Mary is not outdone in generosity. If we give her all our merits, she'll give us all of hers. And that's a big deal.

I once read a story about a saint on earth who had a vision of heaven. In her vision, she saw the saints in heaven and their different degrees of glory. With some saints, she was astonished because they had risen so high in glory as to be worshiping God with the Seraphim, the highest choir of angels. Another time, I read a passage in the Diary of St. Faustina in which Faustina had a similar vision of heaven. She related that if we were to see the differences among the degrees of glory in heaven, we would willingly suffer anything on earth just to move one degree higher. After reading these testimonies, I say to myself, "I not only want to go to heaven, but I want to reach the highest degree of glory in heaven that I possibly can." There's an easy way for us to do this: We give Mary everything. We rely not on our own merits but on hers. Saint Louis explains:

The most holy Virgin ... who never lets herself be outdone in love and liberality, seeing that we give ourselves entirely to her ... meets us in the same spirit. She also gives her whole self, and gives it in an unspeakable manner, to him who gives all to her. She causes him to be engulfed in the abyss of her graces. She adorns him with her merits; she supports him with her power; she illuminates him with her light; she inflames him with her love; she communicates to him her virtues: her humility, her faith, her purity, and the rest. ... In a word, as that consecrated person is all Mary's, so Mary is all his.

Now, despite these consoling words, one might still be troubled and say, "That's great! I'm all for having a high degree of glory in heaven. But what I'm worried about is purgatory. I'm afraid that if I give away all my merits, even to Mary, then I'll have to suffer in purgatory for a very long time." Saint Louis responds:

This objection, which comes from self-love and ignorance of the generosity of God and His holy Mother, refutes itself. A fervent and generous soul who gives God all he has, without reserve, so that he can do nothing more; who lives only for the glory and reign of Jesus Christ, through His holy Mother, and who makes an entire sacrifice of himself to bring it about - will this generous and liberal soul, I say, be more punished in the other world because it has been more liberal and more disinterested than others? Far, indeed, will that be from the truth! Rather, it is toward that soul ... that Our Lord and His holy Mother are the most liberal in this world and in the other, in the orders of nature, grace, and glory.

Okay, this settles it - and we get a gentle rebuke on top of it all. Saint Louis repeats the important point: Mary is not outdone in generosity! If we are especially generous with her, then she'll be especially generous with us. And he makes another good point: the gentle rebuke. He says that these kinds of concerns come from self-love. So, yes, we should aim high. Yes, we should have holy ambition and want to reach the highest heights of holiness. But our motive should not be self-love; rather, it should be that we want to please God and give great glory to him. We should keep this important point in mind when, tomorrow, we read about some of the awesome benefits of being consecrated to Mary.

Today's Prayer:
Come, Holy Spirit, living in Mary. Help me to give great glory to God by giving all I am and have to Mary.


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