Tomorrow is the Traditional Feast of The Queenship of the Blessed Virgin Mary in which we celebrate with great pomp and honor the Mother of God - Theotokos on the day God Himself crowned her Queen of Heaven and earth. It is a good time to realize why God Almighty chose Mary to be coronated. Consider that the present rubbish about choice is merely yet another vile distortion of the devil and we can see clearly what "choice" truly means: giving our fiat to whatever God wills of and from us. For all the trash about people having freedom and choice to do as they wish or as they believe is right, it is only the choice to do what God wants that matters. Our Blessed Mother made numerous such choices in Her life on this earth, and each one tells us much about what holy choice is really about. We have heard about the Seven Sorrows the the Immaculate Heart; here below are a parallel to those that balanced those sorrows with the Seven Choices.
The Choice at The Annunciation
We are told that Mary was given a choice to either accept or decline God's Will that She be the Mother of The Savior Jesus Christ. Many cynics will argue that this was no choice at all since only a fool would decline a direct request from God Almighty. These people might say that declining such a request would likely result in some kind of curse or punishment from above, but does this kind of rationale make any sense given God Almighty's desire that our choices be free ones? This rationale argues that Mary accepted God's request to avoid problems and undesirable consequences, but even a superficial reflection of this situation will reveal just the opposite.
Given the well-known social and cultural circumstances of the time, it would have been much easier for Mary to decline God's request, from an earthly point of view. Despite all of the inherent and possible difficulties attached to choosing toward God, Mary did so without hesitation, with utter humility and obedience, and with the true faith and trust she possessed deep in Her heart for The Lord. Faced with confusion, doubt, the unknown, and certain difficulty, Mary still chose to obey and respect God's Will. This choice was made, of course, with a deep love, faith, trust, and loyalty to that Will and God's Word.
The Choice at The Visitation
In an age when many women view expecting a child as some kind of impending doom or undesirable tragedy, it is quite fascinating to see how Mary embraced Her condition so fully while still maintaining Her true essence of love and service. Even as we see so many women rushing to rip out their unborn child, Mary rushed to serve her cousin in need. Even as we hear the 100 reasons why pregnancy is an inconvenience, we see Mary seeing no inconvenience in traveling a long distance in her condition to help someone in need. Even as we see so many people murdering innocence under the justification and rationalization of preserving their perception of self, we see Mary thinking only of the other and acting with no selfishness or self-interest.
In choosing to visit Her cousin Elizabeth, Mary taught us to visit others in our hearts, souls, minds, and prayers as often as we can, instead of visiting ourselves and our own agenda exclusively. If abortion is the ultimate act of selfishness, then The Visitation is a worthy response to and rejection of that selfishness by this Holiest of Mothers.
The Choice at The Nativity
There were many choices made in Bethlehem that night. Most of them were choices to ignore, to mock, to pretend, to not help. Faced with so many choices against Her interest, how did Mary respond? She chose to silently and contently accept whatever abuse was dished out and whatever assistance was provided. From rejection at the Inn to the cold subjection of a barren, most likely unsanitary stable. Her choice that night was one of humility and acceptance when resentment and protest would have been the choice of most. Mary teaches us that protesting misfortune is choosing against God and dealing with it wrapped in faith and trust for God's Will is choosing toward God.
The Choice at Cana
Just as in The Visitation, Mary's choice at Cana represented a choice to assist when not assisting would have been much easier and unquestioned. An expectant mother is not expected to travel long distances to help a relative. Likewise, a guest at a wedding is not supposed to help the hosts avoid embarrassment. Mary chose against these expectations because She is not about limiting Herself to the expectations of this earth, but rather reaching for the expectations of God Almighty. As Mary told the attendants to follow Her Divine Son's instructions, She is likewise advising us to do the same. If we invite Her to be a guest in our lives regularly, She will grace us with Her Divine Assistance as well.
The Choice at The Way of the Cross
Mary chose to look upon the suffering Face of Her Divine Son as He paid the ultimate sacrifice for our sins when it would have been much easier to stay away. Few if any mothers want to see their children suffer. How many times do we hear of such women staying away from a child's boxing match or trial simply to avoid the pain of seeing such pain? However, by choosing to be there for Her Son and to confront His suffering, Mary was telling us that we too must be there for Him and face His suffering for us as well. It may be much easier to simply ignore or clean up His Passion as we so often see in sanitized crucifixes, resurrexics, Stations of the Cross, religious images, and New Order shams posing as history, but Christ was not about taking the easy way out. The true follower of Christ gladly faces the unpleasant as long as that confrontation is for Christ.
Mary's choice on the way to Calvary continued onto Calvary to the very foot of the Cross, where She continued to embrace Her Divine Son spiritually through His suffering and sacrifice. Having chosen to face His pain and suffering, She very well could have avoided this pain and suffering at its highest point, and few would have castigated her for hiding her eyes from the horror of her Son being crucified in such ignominy; but She did not seek that easy way out. Likewise, the Mary of Calvary is the Woman who became our Heavenly Mother and Queen because, once again, She chose to accept Her Lord's request willingly and gladly. She teaches us that even as we carry our crosses, we can choose to make those crosses arrows toward salvation or chains keeping us mired in selfish pity or resentment. The true response to the suffering that God sends us is to fully embrace that suffering and offer it to God rather than choosing to reject or protest it.
The Choice at The Tomb
We have all seen The Pieta and admired its silent and timeless beauty and meaning, crafted from Heavenly inspiration by the master Michelangelo Buonarotti. Mary's choice at the tomb is the choice to take down that Christ Who has died for us and embrace His sacrifice. It is a choice to take and apply that crucified Christ as a weapon against evil, hate, injustice, sin, and perdition and for love, service, mercy, and salvation. Even as we come out from under the darkest of hours, we are called to continue choosing toward God for He alone can draw us out to the only light that matters. It is therefore important to be there in the dark times for there is, as the Resurrection shows us, a Light at the end of the tunnel. A Light that will envelop us in everlasting glory. Mary knew that truth in her heart as she laid her Divine Son's head down on the platform of the sepulchre. Hope sprang eternal in her heart and she was rewarded for her faith, her fiat and her family of faithful who follow her example.
The Choice with The Apostles
Mary could have either avoided the Apostles or stayed with them only physically instead of interiorly as well. Certainly Her mission seemed completed and Her place in Heaven assured, yet Mary chose to continue being present for the Apostles and to accept their offer of protection and company. We are thus reminded that it is not merely about securing our destiny and eternity, but helping others to do so as well. The true follower of Christ serves until his last breath and the false follower serves himself first and others secondly.
An interesting sidenote is presented in City of God and other mystical works which indicate Our Lady was given a choice of remaining in Heaven shortly after her Divine Son ascended into Heaven or returning to be with the Apostles. Though realizing it was fully her choice, in the spirit of her fiat which she never wavered on, she chose to return to help the Apostles stabilize the Barque of Peter and to expand the Faith her Divine Son established. We know from Rue du Bac, Lourdes, La Salette and Fatima that She continues to provide hands-on help. It is we who have rejected Her help by ignoring her warnings at La Salette and also Fatima. Because we have not emulated her fiat we are in the mess we are in. Why can't we learn from the lesson the Mother of God has shown us? Why is it that we have to learn the hard way? Will we ever learn?
The Queen of the May is the Mary who, so often in Her life on this earth, chose toward God Almighty and not away from Him. No matter what the circumstances, what her situation, what her self-interest would have been, this Holiest of Mothers always chose toward Her God and away from Herself. In an age obsessed with selfishness, with arrogance, with defiance, and with insolence, Mary teaches us that the free choice that God has given us is either a choice toward God or toward ourselves. Sin is thus the choice away from God and toward self while holiness is the choice toward God and away from self. The price for the first choice is perdition and for the second choice is eternal life. Understood in this way, God should always be our only choice, for without Him no choice matters!
Let us heed the example our Heavenly Queen Mother has shown us and grow in grace by saying in all things to God, "Not my will, but Thy will be done."