Mary’s name is from the root for myrrh, meaning bitter. The tree sap that produces myrrh gathers in “tears,” when the bark is deeply scored, which are cherished and collected for their extreme value. Myrrh is the balsam of suffering, purification, and death, as it was used as an opiate to deaden pain, an antiseptic, and in the embalming and preparation of bodies for burial.
See how your Mother loves you? She helps ease your suffering, and purify and prepare your soul for eternal life.
Scripture References for The Show
Luke 1:46-55, the words of the Magnificat
And Mary said:
“My soul magnifies the Lord,
47 and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior,
48 for he has regarded the low estate of his handmaiden.
For behold, henceforth all generations will call me blessed;
49 for he who is mighty has done great things for me,
and holy is his name.
50 And his mercy is on those who fear him
from generation to generation.
51 He has shown strength with his arm,
he has scattered the proud in the imagination of their hearts,
52 he has put down the mighty from their thrones,
and exalted those of low degree;
53 he has filled the hungry with good things,
and the rich he has sent empty away.
54 He has helped his servant Israel,
in remembrance of his mercy,
55 as he spoke to our fathers,
to Abraham and to his posterity for ever.”
1 Samuel 2:1-10, The Magnificat is based on the Song of Hannah.
Scriptural uses of myrrh
- Song of Solomon 1:13, A bundle of myrrh [is] my well-beloved unto me; he shall lie all night between my breasts.
- Esther 2:12, Myrrh used in perfumes, cosmetics, and “purification.”
- Exodus 30:22-38, myrrh used in the tabernacle anointing oil and incense
- Matthew 2:11, Magi bring frankincense and myrrh to Baby Jesus.
- Mark 15:23, Myrrh mixed with wine is offered to Jesus on the cross.
- John 19:39, Myrrh included in burial spices.
Hebrews 5:8, Jesus learned obedience through what He suffered.
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Interactive Scripture Meditation Excercise (Lectio Divina)
This week’s lectio exercise is based on a Benedictine approach. Go on! Try it!
The angel Gabriel was sent from God to a city of Galilee named Nazareth, to a virgin betrothed to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David; and the virgin’s name was Mary. And he came to her and said, “Hail full of Grace, the Lord is with you!” But she was greatly troubled at the saying and considered in her mind what sort of greeting this might be.
And the angel said to her, “Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favor with God. And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus. . . And the angel said to her, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you; For with God nothing will be impossible.”
And Mary said, “Behold, I am the handmaid of the Lord; let it be to me according to your word.”
Please read the abbreviated passage again, below, by filling in the blanks.
The angel was sent from God to (your name) of (your city), and he said, “The Lord is with you!” But (your gender, he/she) was greatly troubled at the saying and considered in (his/her) mind what sort of greeting this might be.
And the angel said, “Do not be afraid, (your name), for you have found favor with God . . . the Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you; For with God nothing will be impossible.”
And (your name) said, “Behold, I am the servant of the Lord; let it be to me according to your word.”
As you place yourself into the narrative, do you have a reaction of some sort, a shiver of anxiety, dread, or thrill? Do you feel blasphemous? Humbled? “Troubled”? Perhaps you’d like to read the meditation again. Talk to God about what you are thinking and feeling.
Because Mary is every soul, we can place ourselves in this narrative, knowing we are also called to allow God to reproduce His word in us, and through us, in the world. What thoughts and emotions surface as you consider this calling?
Perhaps you’d like to sit quietly in His presence for a moment and thank Him for these graces.
Quotes from the Show
Anne Catherine Emmerich, in her Visions, says the Annunciation came to Mary in response to her prayers: “I saw her fervently praying thus for a long time, with her face raised to heaven. She was imploring God for redemption, for the promised King, and beseeching Him that her prayer might have some share in sending Him.”
Catechism of the Catholic Church (CCC 490), The angel Gabriel at the moment of the annunciation salutes her as “full of grace”. In fact, in order for Mary to be able to give the free assent of her faith to the announcement of her vocation, it was necessary that she be wholly borne by God’s grace.
Daily Scripture Reading (Lectio Divina) Resources
- Magnificat – http://us.magnificat.net/flipbook/US/holy_week/
- Give Us This Day – https://www.giveusthisday.org/Home/LookInside
- Word Among Us – https://myaccount.wau.org/signup
- Living Faith – http://www.livingfaith.com/index.php
- Universalis – http://universalis.com/
- United States Conference of Catholic Bishops – http://usccb.org/bible/readings/010717.cfm
- Blessed Is She – https://blessedisshe.net/
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Join the Conversation
How do you learn to hear God speaking through your suffering?
Let me know how you liked the interactive scripture meditation.
For more on discerning the Holy Spirit’s voice through the patterns of your toxic relationships, self-medicating habits, repeating circumstances, and strongest desires, see Unleashed.
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