Saturday, August 15, 2009

The Name that Dare Not Be Spoken

In Harry Potter there is a name that dare not be spoken. When Harry speaks that name aloud, he is shushed by those around him. You know better than say his name out loud, they say.

I wonder if the name of Mary, Blessed Virgin, Theotokos (Mother of God), has not become that name for us Lutherans. Luther was not afraid of that name. Read his Commentary on the Magnificat to gain a sense of his feeling, appreciation, and boldness about the Blessed Mother.

Today is the falling asleep of Mary, her dormition, and a feast day worthy of some reflection. Mary is for us more than saint but truly our Mother. She is the first of those who pondered in her heart all that the Lord had said to her through the angel and all that God had done. She was there for Jesus' first miracle, at the cross, and in the Upper Room she waited with the disciples for the gift of the Spirit. She received one of the seven last words from the cross. No, we ignore her to our peril for she can teach us much of Jesus, her Son and Savior.

Here is a sermon on Mary that gives her the honor that the Father accords her and would that all of us might give. Take a minute to read...

She teaches us humility in her song of praise (The Magnificat). She teaches us absolute trust in the Father's will (Let it be to me according to His Word...). She teaches us to love Jesus and to worship Him who comes to us in flesh and blood as the Son of the Most High God. She teaches us faith, willing to be wounded for His sake and yet never as concerned about her own wounds as His.

She can teach us much if we are willing to read, to listen, to pray, and to learn... But it all begins by speaking her name. If Jesus can honor her as He does and if the Church can call her first of the saints and believers in Jesus, then can we not honor her whom the Lord honored with the gift of His one and only Son?

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