“Behold I am the handmaid of the Lord, be it done unto me according to thy word.” (Luke 1:38)
They were words that would change history.
In a single act of assent and humility, Mary, through her “yes,” would cooperate with God in bringing about his redemption of mankind through Jesus Christ. This “yes,” in Latin fiat, serves as an invitation for us all to trust in God and invite Him more deeply into our lives. The moment Mary said yes, she trusted that God would provide for her in every way. Mary did not know what joys and sorrows her life would entail, but she did have confidence that God would provide for all.
Mary didn’t just say “yes” to the will of God at the Annunciation.
She continued to say “yes” to Him each and every day, and God faithfully provided for her. Of course, this didn’t mean life was without struggle for her. She could never forget Simeon’s words, “you yourself a sword shall pierce.” (Luke 2:35) I am sure it was difficult for her to surrender when Jesus began his public ministry. Obviously, no words can express the anguish she likely felt holding the lifeless body of her son, Jesus, in her arms.
But through it all she continued to resign her will to the will of God.
When I reflect on Mary’s fiat I am profoundly moved by her fortitude, humility, and complete dependence on the providence of God. I am also invited to say yes to God daily, to make my own fiat whereby I allow God to change my heart and soul, and allow him to use me to also change the lives of others.
All too often I let selfishness, fear, and self-reliance deprive me of the opportunity to cooperate with God in my life and the lives of others. All too often I am afraid to say “yes” to God. Fear of isolation and rejection, laziness, and pride are the stumbling blocks that prevent me from giving my complete fiat. Like Mary I must act with fortitude, humility, and trust. And so I flee to her, my beautiful mother, and beg her intercession as I examine where in my life I am being asked to surrender and conform my will to the will of the Father. It is an act of humility. It is an act of love. It is an act of faith.
Will you join me this day in saying “yes” to God?