Wednesday, 2 February 2011
Today is Candlemass.
The official end of the Christmas and Epiphany seasons - Candlemass is a festival that is strongly linked to Mary, Jesus' mother, as her tradition required her to attend the temple, 40 days after giving birth, to be purified.
My attention was drawn to a beautiful poem earlier and I want to share it with you...
Star of Ocean –
Sometimes a child is born who doesn’t cry,
or not much;
who sleeps calmly through the night;
eats sprouts without more than a cat’s face grimace of disgust,
and shares its toys;
a child who’s good, but not disliked;
who’s born without the selfish gene.
If you have ever thought of Mary (Virgin, mother of Christ)
perhaps it was as someone just like that.
I think you’re wrong.
I think that Mary was a Boadicea,
a Katy in What Katy did,
Elizabeth of Hungary,
Lady Godiva, or one of Shakespeare’s feistier heroines.
If you were God, choosing a mother to bring up your Son, your Self,
who would you pick?
A characterless white mouse, a nullity?
Little Dorrit? Nell?
Or someone with the steel to bear the weight of hope and love and death?
Someone unformed, as rough as carborundum;
someone who would be polished by her choice into a sapphire with a perfect star’.
Lynn Roberts (Tablet Magazine)
I love this for all sorts of reasons.
I particularly like the idea that God was looking for someone who would stand firm and fight, someone who would be a "feisty heroine"
Why do I like that?
I guess its because I've always imagined Mary to be like that. Not a push over at all but someone with an inner core of strength - to cope with bearing "the weight of hope and love and death".
Bearing responsibility for another - whoever they are, not just your child - can be extremely costly but the rewards are immeasurable...