Holding Mary's Hand

The Rosary is central to my spirituality because it is an active meditation on the mysteries of Jesus' life - particularly in relationship to ours, and always through the eyes of His mother. Praying these prayers - most straight from scripture - daily and meditating daily on parts of His life, death, and glory has taught me so much about who Jesus is, how He relates to me, and how I am supposed to live in response.

Often, when I pray the Rosary, something sticks out. Themes develop, and Jesus reveals Himself through His mother's eyes, letting her tell the story of His life. Mysteries that never struck you suddenly do - I mean really, how often do we sit and just think about the Presentation of Jesus at the temple? Not just the prophesies, but the Presentation itself? Or how about the Finding of Jesus in the Temple? Or Jesus' Transfiguration? Probably not very often unless you are praying the Rosary or just ran into it in your reading.

Unfortunately, I have fallen out of the habit of a daily Rosary; a week rarely goes by where I pray a Rosary every day, and my spirit can feel it. Still, however, the mysteries come and beg to be pondered, so despite the fact that I scarcely get - or give - as much out of them as I would were I praying along with the scriptural prayers, I still ponder them. At Mass, I walk through the mysteries, when someone is going through a hard time, one of them comes up as the mystery to relate, when I sit down to pray, the mysteries naturally come and beg to be pondered, to be prayed, to be lived.

Despite my lack of daily praying of the Rosary, if you look around my stuff, you will find I routinely have more than one within grasp. At least one (usually 2) are in my purse, one on my rearview mirror, one in my Bible, several about my room (at least one of these are always in my bed or draped over the headstand), and a decade around my ankle (and when I no longer work at a lab and have to wear gloves all the time, I intend to get a cord decade for my wrist as well).

Why? Why so many? Well, outside of the fact that many have their own special meanings, stories, and reasons behind them, I find that holding the Rosary is like holding Mary's hand - my Mommy's hand. Even when I feel far away from Jesus or Mary, when life feels overwhelming, and I cannot form the words to pray about it, when I feel lonely or out of touch with the world, I can hold a Rosary and feel like I am holding Mary's hand.. Falling asleep while holding a Rosary is one of my favorite things to do (and it makes my sleep much better - ask those at this past Awakening with me. I didn't sleep much, but what I got was amazing!)

Today is the feast of Our Lady of the Rosary, and I always pictured her as one of the more grand, but less personal aspects of Mary. Now, however, I know that she is one of the most maternal. She is the one who introduces us to Jesus. She lets us see Him as a child, see her fear at losing Him and her joy at finding Him. She lets us see His ministry, His Passion, and see the effects of His love. She begs us to come and adore Him.


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