So they [shepherds] came hurriedly, and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby lying in the feeding trough. On seeing him, they related what they had been told about the child; and all were astonished on hearing the shepherds.
As for Mary, she treasured all these words, and pondered them in her heart.
The shepherds then returned, giving glory and praise to God for all they had heard and seen, just as the angels had told them.
On the eighth day, the circumcision of the baby had to be performed; he was named Jesus, the name the angel had given him before he was conceived.
“She treasured all these words, and pondered them in her heart.” The Doctors of the Church endlessly repeat that, before ever conceiving Jesus in her body, Mary conceived him in her heart. By which expression they mean to say that the affinity between Mary and Jesus was not only the physical affinity existing between any normal mother and child. It was much more than that. It was a spiritual affinity, the one uniting two minds thinking on the same wave length, two hearts loving the same values, two wills deeply aligned on God’s will. Most Christians emphasize the fact that Mary was Jesus’ physical mother. But they rarely go beyond and grasp that Mary was Jesus’ mother at such a depth that it defies our imagination. This does not mean that Mary understood Jesus perfectly, for she did not, as later gospel events will show. But she was willing to “ponder” the mystery of her Son, despite its awful incomprehensibility.
She is our unsurpassable model in this. Instead of being so busy doing all kinds of things for the Kingdom, maybe we should spend more time in solitude, pondering the things of God in our hearts…
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