By Marina Austin
We all know that there are times when the demands of womanhood are very heavy to bear. No one besides our heavenly mother knows what it is like to ponder deep burdens and store them in the recesses of our heart. Now, I do not know what is troubling you today nor do I know your story, but if something prodded you to even start to read this article, then perhaps, the Holy Spirit is drawing you to the Throne of Grace to strengthen through His Immaculate Spouse.
How I came to know Mary
Back in 2005, I was living my best worldly life but, on the inside, there was an unshakeable hunger and emptiness. Outwardly, I loved a good party. Inwardly, I struggled with feeling like I did not belong, not being loved and feelings of inadequacy—even amid a crowd. Then, my sister gave me a copy of True Devotion to Mary by St Louis de Montfort and I subsequently made the total consecration.
Like everyone else, I still am trying to work out my ‘salvation with fear and trembling’ but I can testify that despite how I may have vacillated over the years, Mary has never let me go. Even as I am writing this, I am tearing up in gratitude that I have lived to tell the tale, that a soul consecrated to the Blessed Mother would never be lost. Surely, I would have been lost had it not been for Mary. Indeed, she is the shortest, surest, easiest and safest way to get to Jesus.
Let Nothing Depress You
To prove her divine motherhood, Jesus gave her to His beloved disciple from the cross when He said, “Behold your Mother”. To be honest, I had never contemplated the depth of this until recently. While reflecting on the story of our Lady of Guadeloupe, Mary’s words to Juan Diego, were, “Am I not here, I who am your mother?”. This was after she told him to let nothing depress nor distress him.
Honestly, we do not talk enough about mental health issues. In truth, for many Christians, the struggle is all too real. Too many of our Christian brothers and sisters are suffering in silence and isolation, feeling ashamed about it as well, God wants to us come to Him when we are weary, facing depression, anxiety, and distress. Most importantly, the Word who became flesh, desired that we ascend to Him using the same means through which He came to us—the Blessed Virgin Mary.
What happens when we call on Mary when we are in the tunnel of depression? In my experience, she shows up, with her light and her grace, and walks beside us until we step into the light. She does not let us battle alone. Mary also changes the face of the battle and takes on that serpent of depression, which was trying to strike at our heel, and crushes it. By consistently calling upon
Mary and trusting in her maternal heart, the battle will be surely overcome. Then, we experience the joy which Jesus promised us (Jn 10:10).
The Principal Virtues of our Blessed Mother
I would like to end this short reflection with a poem that I wrote many years ago when I first consecrated my life to Jesus through Mary. May these words touch your life as it has touched mine. During this month of Mary, let us consecrate our lives to the Blessed Virgin Mary. Let her be our model of faith and may we be imitating her virtues: her deep faith, blind obedience, lively faith, unceasing prayer, constant self-denial, surpassing purity, ardent love, heroic patience, angelic kindness and heavenly wisdom.
Poem: Mary my Mother
Mary my mother,
Transfix my human eyes-
On the passion of your son.
Transform my human heart,
Cleanse the effects of the wrongs that I’ve done.
Transfigure my human body,
Into the garden of Eden.
Change my human ways,
So that I may always walk in freedom.
Touch my human tongue,
Let my words ever be pure.
Tell my human ear,
The plans that God has in store.
Take my every despicable human trait,
And replace them with your simple grace.
In my moments of depression and human frailty,
The sweetness of God’s grace, I long to taste.
Mary, keep me close to you,
More than ever now.
Hide me, protect me, and console me,
As only a mother knows how