‘Mary is the Paradise of God and His wonderful world, into which the Son of God entered, that He might work wonders there, might watch over and seek His delight in it.’
God Himself prepared this chosen creature, formed her with minute and jealous care. He decked with rare gifts and unknown privileges this new Paradise destined to shelter the Father of the truly living, in a greater degree than He ever did that other Paradise, destined for our first parents. Before Mary He made original sin recoil; He wrapped her in the sun of her Immaculate Conception as in a cloak; He placed on her brow a diadem, sparkling with graces and privileges, with power and glory, love and kindness. He gave her universal rule over all the worlds; the place beside Him, more than that, the first place and the authority over Him, sine He made her the Mother of His Son. And when He had finished, God, delighted with His work, exclaimed as in a transport of enthusiasm: ‘How beautiful art thou, My love! There is not a spot in thee.’
Then when the hour so long awaited for the realization of Love’s design had struck, God sent a Prince of the Celestial court to hail His Chosen One. ‘Hail full of grace, the Lord is with thee.’
And when the Virgin had uttered the humble and prodigious Fiat of the little handmaid of the Lord, the Word, without a pause, was made Flesh: ‘Et Verbum caro factum est.’ The Son of God became the Son of Mary and Mary became in truth the Paradise of God.
Who shall say what gifts of joyful greeting were brought by the Word to this living Tabernacle in which He was to dwell? Montfort says that ‘He worked wonders in it, watched over it and sought His delight in it.’
What were these wonders? Eye has not seen nor intelligence grasped the sum of grace brought by the Son to the soul of Mary when He penetrated there. First Himself, and that was Everything, and this Everything comprised all bounty and all supernatural treasure. And when the Son of God in due time had left like a ripe fruit His Mother’s womb, there lingered there the fragrance of His presence, the fragrance of a God; He stayed there through grace, extraordinary grace, through a divine and constant indwelling, unknown to our human understanding. If S. Paul could say: ‘And I live, now not I, but Christ liveth in me,’ how much more could Mary do so.
Only God can understand the incomparable and exquisite beauty with which He Himself has endowed this living tabernacle of the Divinity.
(To be continued.)