Image via Wikipedia
December 1, 2011
Dear Family of Mary!
"Dear children! Wake up from the sleep of unbelief and sin, because this is a time of grace which God gives you. Use this time and seek the grace of healing of your heart from God, so that you may see God and man with the heart. Pray in a special way for those who have not come to know God's love, and witness with your life so that they also can come to know God and His immeasurable love. Thank you for having responded to my call." (February 25, 2000)
During this novena in honor of the Immaculate Conception, we are praying for the grace of Mary's Immaculate Conception, the grace of purity and wholeness that she received and which we hope to approach through healing. In this message from February of 2000, Our Lady urged us to seek the grace of healing of our hearts from God. She links the healing of our hearts with regaining the ability to see God and our brothers and sisters with the heart. I find this very interesting.
We don't often think about seeing with our hearts. We see with our eyes. And we see with our minds, in the sense that we apply our rational thinking to a problem and come to "see" the problem or the meaning of something. But what is seeing with the heart? I think it is seeing with disin
Image via Wikipedia
terested love, with contemplative honesty and peace, seeing the other and loving him without fear. Our hearts see the other as a person, and we love the person as God loves.
Then why must we be healed to see with the heart? One thought occurs to me. When our hearts are wounded, they become filled with the consequences of the wounding. For instance, if as a little one, we perceived that our earthly father was not happy that we were conceived, if he was worried about the responsibility, or he didn't want a child, we could have been wounded by his rejection and could have internalized intense sadness or disorientation, thoughts that are unhappy, feelings that made us lonely or fearful. Such wounds cause our hearts to become closed, frightened, noisy, selfish, and more. All those unhappy feelings and thoughts swirl around inside of our hearts and make it very hard for us to actually look outside ourselves. The eyes of our hearts are turned inward and we are not able to see with our heart because it is so burdened and full of shame.
In order to be able to look outward, the heart must be unburdened. The truth must be introduced into the heart so that all those yucky sad attitudes and feelings can be discarded. It is a work of grace when we let God enter our heart and shine His truth on us, driving out the sadness and despair. The truth for a rejected little child is this: "God made me. God meant for me to be conceived. He is delighted at my being. He keeps me alive by His love and grace. And He will never reject me. I am His child, meant and loved and called." We can see how these words of truth spoken by the Holy Spirit in our hearts could dispel the darkness. Then, our hearts could be free to look outward, with openness and love, to see God as He is and our brothers and sisters as they are and to love them.
This is why healing of the heart is so necessary! I experienced a little taste of such a healing today while I was driving. I saw a person who reminded me of someone in my past, someone who had hurt me. I was given the grace to take that memory to prayer and while I was driving I found myself forgiving that person from the past, and another person and another and another...It was like a river flowing out of my heart, taking the pain away and replacing it with freedom. Forgiveness!! It was a moment of grace; I never expected it to happen. It just did. This is what I think Our Lady can do during our novena. She can heal our hearts through her intercession. And we will be able to see with the heart!!
PRAYER TO THE IMMACULATE CONCEPTION
O God, who by the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary, did prepare a worthy dwelling place for Your Son, we beseech You that, as by the foreseen death of this, Your Son, You did preserve Her from all stain, so too You would permit us, purified through Her intercession, to come unto You. Through the same Lord Jesus Christ, Your Son, who lives and reigns with You in the unity of the Holy Spirit, God, world without end. Amen.
O Blessed Virgin Mary, glory of the Christian people, joy of the universal Church and Mother of Our Lord, speak for us to the Heart of Jesus, who is your Son and our brother. O Mary, who by your holy Immaculate Conception did enter the world free from stain, in your mercy obtain for us from Jesus the special favor which we now so earnestly seek... (State your intention here...)
O Mary of the Immaculate Conception, Mother of Christ, you had influence with your Divine Son while upon this earth; you have the same influence now in heaven. Pray for us and obtain for us from him the granting of my petition according to God's will. Amen.
Litany of the Blessed Virgin Mary:
In Jesus, Mary and Joseph!
©Mary TV 2011