Wednesday, May 31, 2017 Visitation of Mary

Nehemiah, Chapter 4, Verse 3
We prayed to our God and posted a watch against them day and night for fear of what they might do.

Here this references the Jewish people as they attempt to rebuild their great nation and the enemies of Judah encircle them and poise to launch an attack against them. Sounds like the battle cry of the unbelieving secular media against the current administration in DC and those who are carrying their guns and their bibles who resist them. One wonders what the god of a secular media is.

False Gods[1]

The media view themselves as their own gods—masters of their own fates. Many of these self-made gods control our media. As gods, they want no competition. They reject the truth that God is God alone and that He will hold them accountable for mocking Him and His followers. Thus, the truth is hell to them, even before they get there. They express their hatred for God’s truth by heaping venom on anyone who declares the truth. They are rewriting American history, to fit their desire for self-worship, want to silence truth. Thus, whenever a Christian lovingly and thoughtfully points them to the truth of history, they hound them down, accusing them of “racism,” “hate speech” and “bigotry.” Why? Because truth to them is hell, so they want to muzzle their message. To them these truths are hell, so they respond by likening Christians to the Taliban and the Jihadis … can you imagine?

·         The Christians who founded the hospital movement.
·         The Christians who founded the library movement.
·         The Christians who founded the orphanage movement.
·         The Christians who founded education.
·         The Christians, who have and continue to feed the hungry, clothe the naked and care for the needy.
·         The Christians who sacrificed and continue to sacrifice in following the role model of their Savior who gave His all on a cross to save them. How can they say that Christians are likened to the Taliban?
·         The Taliban who shoot women in the head at close range in soccer stadiums.
·         The Taliban who bury people alive for their sins and misdemeanors.
·         The Taliban who stone women to death for mere accusations.

My concern is that the very truth that can set them free is the truth they attack. I know why they attack it—because it feels like hell to them. It is condemning. However, my heart is not to condemn them but to pray to God to open their blind eyes, just like He opened mine, so that they may see the truth before it is too late for them.


Dr. Michael Youssef's expertise on the Islamic culture and the Middle East in today's post-modern world is actively sought by hundreds of thousands of followers around the globe. With a Ph.D. from Emory University in social anthropology, his Egyptian heritage gives him particular insight into the cultural and religious entanglements of international affairs. It is estimated that over 10 million viewers/listeners around the world are tuned in every week through an international Christian media ministry founded by Youssef, www.leadingtheway.org. It broadcasts via radio and television to over 200 countries and in over 20 languages. Follow Youssef, a common sense intellectual and renowned author of 24 books, on twitter @michaelayoussef and through his news blog, www.michaelyoussef.com.

Visitation of Mary[2]

This day is called the Visitation of the Blessed Virgin Mary, because on it Mary visited her cousin Elizabeth, whom, as the angel had told her, God had blessed with a son in her old age.

I have always thought that on this occasion the reason Elizabeth was so enlivened at the leaping of John in her womb was because as an older pregnant woman she may have feared that John was stillborn? Is it possible that John the Baptist was Jesus’s first miracle? It is an interesting thought.

The Canticle of Mary

My soul proclaims the greatness of the Lord, My Spirit rejoices in God my Savior For He has looked with favor on His lowly servant. From this day all generations will call me blessed: The Almighty has done great things for me, and holy is His Name. He has mercy on those who fear Him, in every generation. He has shown the strength of His arm, He has scattered the proud in their conceit. He has cast down the mighty from their thrones, and has lifted up the lowly. He has filled the hungry with good things, And the rich He has sent away empty. He has come to the help of His servant Israel for He has remembered His promise of mercy, the promise He made to our fathers, To Abraham and his children forever.
Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit, as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be forever. Amen.

EXPLANATION OF THE CANTICLE

In this hymn Mary with joy praises God, the Lord, that He has regarded her humility, and made her to be the Mother of His only-begotten Son, wherefore she should be called blessed by all generations; and she declares the truths and mysteries which the incarnation brought to light. The mercy of God, namely, reaches from generation to generation to them that fear Him. He scatters the thoughts of the proud, and puts down from their seats the mighty; but He exalts the humble. He fills those who hunger for justice with good things, but those who think themselves rich He sends away empty. He receives all true Israelites, and performs in them the promises which He gave to the fathers. This hymn is repeated by the Church every day at Vespers, in praise of the work of redemption, begun by the incarnation of the Son of God in Mary. Would that every Christian, since he becomes one only by Christ being, as it were, born in him, might share those feelings which the Blessed Virgin and Mother has expressed in this hymn of praise, and, with the Church, daily praise God for the mystery of the incarnation

The gift of Wisdom[3]

Wisdom empowers a person “to judge and order all things in accordance with divine norms and with a connaturality that flows from a loving union with God.” So while knowledge and understanding enable a person to know and to penetrate the divine truths, wisdom moves us to “fall in love” with them. The Holy Spirit aids the contemplation of divine things, enabling the person to grow in union with God. This gift unites us to the heart of Jesus. Father Adolphe Tanquerey taught, “This, then, is the difference between the gift of wisdom and that of understanding, the latter is a view taken by the mind, while the former is an experience undergone by the heart; one is light, the other love, and so they united and complete one another. Wisdom, withal, remains the more perfect gift; for the heart outranges the intellect, it sounds greater depths, and grasps or divines what reason fails to reach. This is particularly the case with the saints, in whom love often surpasses knowledge” (The Spiritual Life, p. 630). For example, St. Therese of Lisieux (declared a doctor of the church), had no formal education in theology, and yet was wise to the ways of the Lord, a wisdom gained through prayer and simple acts of love offered to God. While this gift contemplates the divine, it also is a practical wisdom. It applies God’s ideas to judge both created and divine matter, thereby directing human acts according to divine wisdom. Therefore, a person will see and evaluate all things — both joy and sorrow, pleasure and pain, success and failure — from God’s point of view, and accept them with equanimity. With wisdom, all things, even the worst, are seen as having a supernatural value — for example, giving value to martyrdom. Here a person arises above the wisdom of this world, and lives in the love of God. St. Paul captured well this gift of wisdom: “What we utter is God’s wisdom: a mysterious, a hidden wisdom. God planned it before all ages for our glory. …Yet God has revealed this wisdom to us through the Spirit. …The Spirit we have received is not the world’s spirit but God’s Spirit, helping us to recognize the gifts He has given us. We speak of these, not in words of human wisdom but in words taught by the Spirit, thus interpreting spiritual things in spiritual terms. The natural man does not accept what is taught by the spirit of God. For him, that is absurdity. He cannot come to know such teaching because it must be appraised in a spiritual way. The spiritual man, on the other hand, can appraise everything. We have the mind of Christ” (I Cor 2:6ff). Or consider St. John’s first epistle: “God is love. Everyone who loves is begotten of God and has knowledge of God. …He who abides in love, abides in God, and God in him. Our love is brought to perfection in this, that we should have confidence on the Day of Judgment; for our relation to this world is just like His. Love has no room for fear; rather, perfect love casts out all fear” (I Jn 4:7, 17-18).

Daily Devotions/Prayers

·         Drops of Christ’s Blood
·         Novena to the Holy Spirit

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