I woke up Saturday morning thinking about what Mary must have felt as she woke up the day after the Friday we call “Good.” I wondered if she’d slept at all. I wondered if she was angry with God or crushed by defeat. I wondered if she sunk into despair or let cyclical thoughts of “Why me?” and “after all we’ve already been through…” spill into every part of her heart, mind, soul, and strength. I wondered if she questioned her role in what had happened to her Son and Savior. I wondered if she’d had second thoughts, if she’d regretted giving her yes, her fiat, when the Angel Gabriel came to her. I wondered if she’d do it all again?
In that Holy Saturday morning, what did My Mary feel? Was she exhausted from tossing and turning? Had she collapsed into a sleep that didn’t refresh? Did she wake with nightmares? Were her eyes swollen, red, and puffy?
Did she see the face of Jesus every time she closed her eyes? What was the face she saw when she thought of Him? Was it the final moments as He gave her to John and the world as He suffered on the Cross or was it a smooth-cheeked, feisty little Jesus who’d played pranks on His Mother and then won her over with a fistful of flowers clutched in his chubby little hand?
Did Jesus console her in the three days before He made it known to the rest of the world that death had not defeated Him? Had He prepared her for what was coming? Had He comforted her when He Himself had needed comforting? Had her seen her shed her tears as He shed His Blood through His Sweat? Had He taken moments from His descent to Hell to hold His Mother, stroke her hair, and promise her He was true and alive and okay? Had He known the reassurance every mother needs and gifted His beloved Mother with His reassurance?
What was My Mary thinking that Holy Saturday morning?
I may never know, but what I do know is that she kept on living. She made it through that day. She did not stop hoping. She did not stop believing. She did not give up. She did not stop loving. She was not prideful or spiteful. She did not let cyclical thoughts of hate and vengeance spiral, escalate, and consume her. She did not let cowardice or fear hold her back.
Instead, she humbly leaned on John, Jesus’s beloved Apostle. She absorbed his pain with her own. She wiped the tears and shock from the sweetly transformed eyes of Mary Magdalene’s. She chose to be grateful for Joseph of Arimathea. She went through the motions and held onto what her only Son had taught her. When things looked bleak, My Mary stayed the course.
And what a difference one day makes!
What would the Mother of God have thought Easter Sunday? How would her outlook have changed? Would the spark be back in her eye? Would her smile radiate pure joy again? Would her already perfect belief be more awakened? Would she hold her Baby close to her heart or share Him freely with others?
Mary, My Mary, is human. She is not God, but she was created to bring God into the world and God, who is never changing, continues to use her as a vessel to bring Christ to us and us to Christ. When He seems far away, reaching for the example of My Holy Saturday Mary gives hope. She gives a model on how to handle troubling situations.
This is not the day to act as the world does. This is not the time to curl into a ball of fear, denial, or cowardice. This is not when we lash out in anger, pride, or vengeance. This is time to act as My Holy Saturday Mary did.
When all seems lost, when God is truly invisible, when it seems darkness has won, this is when it is most important to act on faith. It is our actions that take us to brighter days. Too often we wait for our mindsets to change when what we must do is move our way to a better mindset. When we mourn for too long, our hope and optimism, and eventually our faith, atrophy.
You know all those questions about what My Mary would do? Those are asked because I can see myself doing those things, not because I see her doing them? I have no idea whether she did them or not. It is not for me to know yet.
What I do know is that one day made an eternal world of difference.
The human me wants that pattern to be repeated. I interject myself onto Holy Saturday Mary and into how I think God *should* handle my problems. I want Him to snap His fingers and fix them overnight.
Instead, He tells us to keep moving through the darkness. He tells us, when we cannot see, we need to move to the Light. He tells us to take the lessons of My Holy Saturday Mary.
You are not to exist but to live!
You are to hope and believe. You are to strive and to love. You are to be humble and merciful. You are to build self awareness and recognize spiraling, cyclical, negative thoughts and purposely interject positivity into them. You are to act in a way that brings healing to yourself and to those in your circle when they are willing to accept it.
I don’t know what Mary thought Holy Saturday, but it is said she is the one who first instituted the 14 Stations of the Cross. Doing so would should us the depth of her grief, the impact of her trauma, her reliving of the nightmare. It also shows us she still had a purpose on this Earth and could not be taken to Heaven until her purpose had been fulfilled.
Mary’s main purpose was to bring Jesus to the world, but her life did not end at the Nativity, nor did it end at the Cross.
Whatever you are going through now, be assured, your purpose is still real. If you are still here, you have yet to fulfill your entire purpose. Maybe you have yet to discover it. Maybe you want it to magically appear and for your world to change overnight as it did over 2000 years ago.
That does happen sometimes. More often than not though, change happens with a string of single days looped together into life. The change comes not in magical solutions, but in your moving your way to better in every day.
Does one day make a difference today the way it did for My Mary as she moved from Holy Saturday to Easter Sunday? I believe it does, if we let it. It is all the quiet, behind the scenes changes, the questions we don’t have the right to know about now that we keep acting on in faith that makes us come truly alive! These are how our world changes. This is how you change!
Act in faith. Believe! You never know when your one day will arrive!
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