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Theotokos: Wednesday of the 2nd Week of Advent
“My soul magnifies the greatness of the Lord” (Luke 1:46)
As Mary receives Elizabeth’s greeting, she responds with the first chords of her great Magnificat, “My soul magnifies the greatness of the Lord.” We presume that as the Mother of God, Mary had a pretty healthy self-esteem, but really—her soul magnifies God? How can a human magnify that which is greater?
Rev. Scott Traynor helps us understand how Mary’s soul magnifies God with the image of Echo Canyon, Colorado. Echo Canyon has breathtaking postcard views around every corner. However, it’s not famous for the view only. If you stand in the right spot and shout out your name, the sound will literally reverberate though out the entire canyon, echoing over and over and ascending louder and louder. Echo Canyon, because it is perfectly designed to do so, receives a spoken word and perfectly magnifies it for the world to hear. So Echo Canyon is not greater than your voice, nor can it generate anything on its own. However, Echo Canyon, because it is perfectly shaped, magnifies your voice for the world to hear.
Mary does magnify the Lord. Mary’s soul, like Echo Canyon, perfectly receives God and echoes to the world what she hears. Remember her emptiness? It makes for perfect echo.
In a sense, you too are Echo Canyon. Our souls were made to magnify God and echo His glory for the world to hear. However, if our soul (the canyon) is wounded, cluttered, or out of tune, then we won’t echo what God says. We’ll echo something else entirely different. How’s your echo? How empty is your soul from anything that would prevent perfect reverberation of divine Word? What would need to be emptied from your life so that your soul would echo as Mary’s did?
For your prayer
Mary would have often prayed with the 1st Book of Samuel. Prep your imaginative prayer by slowly reading 1st Samuel 2:1-10.
Use your spiritual senses and imaginatively pray with Mary in Luke 1:46 “Father, I ask for the grace of perfect echo. I beg you to reveal anything that prevents my soul from magnifying your voice.”
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© Fr. Mark Toups, 2015