The Interior Life of Mary

Mary adorned with all gifts, enriched with all virtues, perfect in all her graces, appeared to the world under a most ordinary exterior. There was nothing brilliant in her actions, her virtues were not striking, her life was passed in silence and obscurity, and the Gospel narrative says nothing of it. This was because Mary was to be the model of the life hidden in God with Jesus Christ, which we ought to honor and faithfully copy in our conduct.

Mary led only an ordinary life hidden and unknown. What must we conclude from this save that the hidden and interior life is the most perfect? And so it is without doubt. The active, outer life, although devoted to God, is less perfect. It was the same in Our Lord’s case. His life was much more hidden than exposed to the gaze of men. All the saints were formed on His model.

Without the interior spirit, how can we pray? If before Our Lord, we know not how to pass a single instant without a book, if we have nothing to say to Him from our own heart, why do we go to make our adoration? What! can we never speak our own thoughts? Must we always borrow the thoughts and words of strangers? No, no! Let us labor to become interior.

Every one cannot be like Jesus and Mary, but every one can be according to his own grace and his own virtue. Without that we shall never receive consolation and encouragement in prayer, we should be too unhappy at the feet of Our Lord. To be an adorer, one must be interior. We must talk when kneeling before Our Lord. We must ask Him questions, and listen to His answers. We must enjoy God. We must be happy in His company, happy in His service. We need His familiarity, so sweet, so encouraging. But in order to find the Heart and the love of Jesus, we must be interior. . . . Jesus does not make Himself heard by the ears, nor seen by the eyes of the body. He speaks only to the recollected soul. Jesus is wholly interior in the Blessed Sacrament. He no longer enters into the heart through the sight, as during His mortal life. He now enters the soul directly and speaks to it alone. . . . He has said that His yoke is sweet, and His burden light, but that means sweet and light for him who carries it with prayer and the interior life. Without that it would be heavy and fatiguing. When we are not interior, everything goes wrong in our life. O how I should wish to see accomplished in us that word so fully realized in the Blessed Virgin: “The kingdom of God is within you,” the kingdom of love, of virtue, and of interior grace! Then we would begin to be adorers and saints. The grass of the field dies annually, because its roots do not strike deep in the soil; but the oak, the olive, and the cedar stand year after year, because their roots are sunk deep into the bottom of the earth.

Text from Father Eymard’s Month of Our Lady of the Blessed Sacrament (New York: Sentinel Press, 1903).

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