Pray to the Holy Spirit to be our Teacher before we read from the Gospel of Luke 1:39-56.
"Come Holy Spirit and reveal to me what is hidden from the wise and the learned. Let me be a child, eager to learn and experience, what you want to teach me about loving and about being Mary to those in need. Help me to remember that Jesus is dwelling in my heart right now. Help me through the love, respect and concern I show to those in need, to share Jesus with them. Let me bring them joy where there is sadness, peace where there is disturbance, courage where there is fear, love where there is hatred and hope where there is despair. Thank you Holy Spirit."
We also are "filled with the Holy Spirit" like Elizabeth, when we allow the anointing of our Baptism and Confirmation to be alive in us, to reach out and share Jesus with those in need. All of us know people who are hurting, sad, lonely or afraid. A small visit, a telephone call, an email, a letter or card, sharing a power point presentation, a joke or a good story with them, brightens up their day. I have a Doctor-friend who heals me nearly everyday through his sharings on the email. God bless him!!
The child in us leaps for joy when the Spirit of God touches our heart and we can break forth into spontaneous songs of praise and thanks, like Mary in her Magnificat. The psalms are so full of joyful praise and thanks. The imagery of a deer yearning for running streams or a dry, arid land awaiting the monsoons describes the expectation of those in pain or on a sick bed who eagerly await a visit from a kind friend who steps in to cheer them up.
I bring Jesus to sick persons and sing a hymn with them. One of my favourite hymns is "God is dwelling in my heart" and there is a verse: "With Jesus in my heart, what have I to fear? For he is the son of God; in my heart he is near" What a privilege this is. I come back with a song in my heart or I have met Jesus too in the smile of that person who is cheered up and grateful for a visit from the "mother of my Lord". Yes we are called to be Mary to others, in taking Jesus to them.
A Hindu man who was bed-ridden and very poor, longed for a brief visit when I was a Seminarian. I spent a moment with him and at his request placed my hand on his head and said a brief prayer with him for strength, courage and peace of mind. He told me I was an "avatar" … one who gave him a God-experience. He looked forward to those brief visits.
Everyday we have many opportunities to make choices as to how we will use our time and the opportunities that God gives us to be life-giving to others. Share life, share love, share Jesus. This is the reason why we are anointed and empowered by the Holy Spirit of God. We are all called to be Jesus' disciples on mission everyday to those in need. "When I was hungry, you gave me to eat. When I was sick you visited me" (Mt 25) We can offer Jesus our hands to be his hands to touch, heal, embrace. We can offer Jesus our voice to speak a kind, encouraging, appreciative and comforting word. He has no other hands but ours. He has no other voice but ours today.
In giving we receive, in loving we are loved, in comforting we are comforted, in forgiving, we are forgiven, in healing, we are healed. So remember today will not come back and the people Jesus wants us to heal are eagerly awaiting our presence and help. It really does not matter how much we have to offer. A smile, a kind word, a gentle touch, a warm hug, a patient look, a listening heart are the ways we can enter into the world of others and let them know that they are precious in God' sight.
So go in the power of the Spirit and be Mary to others. Share Jesus with them.