I have seedlings.
This is a big deal, as I am not known for being able to keep plants alive. And so I spent an excessive amount of time staring at the seeds before covering them with soil…wondering…
How is it possible that there are instructions hidden inside this tiny little speck of nothing? How does this perfect formula of seeds + sun + soil + water = flowers even exist?
The Creator, that’s how. The Creator of formulas and recipes and equations and systems and building blocks.
Beyond the instructions is an important question. Who will implement them?
In the case of flowers, it could be the wind or a bird that drops the seed in just the right spot, innocently doing what they were made to do. Or perhaps a human, longing for beauty, will make a choice to participate in creation.
Either way, God has created a system that requires collaboration. His creatures are purposeful. Each is interesting on its own. But when working together with other creatures and with God to follow His instructions to produce something else entirely…it’s phenomenal.
It reminds me of His masterpiece. The greatest formula of all time.
There was a time when I didn’t know how important this formula was or that it continues on even now. I remember a time when I would rather just skip past the process and claim the end result. After all, the supermarket has flowers already in bloom.
Yet Jesus is desperately needed for another equation (Me + Jesus = Heaven). To assume I can simply grab the end result whenever I please seems about as risky and naive as counting on the supermarket in hurricane-pandemic season.
Still, I’m in awe that God might want me to somehow participate in this, any more than He might want me (a known plant killer) to help Him grow a flower.
Yet, even as I claim to be incapable of growing flowers, He has put all the supplies within my reach.
What would happen if the seed was simply left alone? Capable of making something amazing with the instructions hidden inside…but no collaborators to trigger the perfectly designed process.
Is knowing of the flower enough? If you are given the exquisite end result, will it continue to thrive in your hands without any interaction?
So many people believe the flower exists and agree it is beautiful. But they do not believe they can participate in growing it. They never experience it blooming in their souls. The flower wilts into a memory of what could have been, even as they speak of its beauty; its growth stunted by missing a part of the formula.
What eventually happens to a flower that has sun and water, but no soil for its roots to cling to?
What does it do to a meal if you leave out a key ingredient?
Will a math equation or a science experiment be completely solved if the variable is never defined?
Will a question be answered or a concept fully explained if an entire section is ripped out of the book?
And how will we fully know Jesus, if we never add in Mary?
She is all around us already, through no doing of our own. Like the wildflowers scattered by the wind and birds, she is there by someone else’s doing, waiting for us to notice and participate. Her image is residing in every Catholic Church, her apparitions and miracles are recorded in books and repeated throughout the ages. Her virtues and goodness are continually overshadowed by the Holy Spirit to bring us Jesus.
I know this is true.
Not only because it logically makes sense.
Not only because I can map it out in the Bible.
Not only because I can follow example after example in history.
Saint after saint’s testimony.
Apparition after apparition.
Miracle after miracle.
I know this is true because when I went searching for the flower, God gave me the seed.
When I cried out to Jesus in despair, He introduced me to Mary.
She had the instructions to get back to Him when I was in too much darkness to see. When the Holy Spirit saw her with me, He rushed in providing everything needed to implement them.
Together they walked with me, then ran with me, then flew with me until we were at the foot of His Cross offering Jesus to His Father to complete the formula.
Trying to hold on to Him without Mary would be like trying to keep my supermarket flowers alive forever.
As the vine I have brought forth a pleasant odor, and my flowers are the fruit of honor and riches. I am the mother of fair love, and of fear, and of holy hope. In me is all grace of the way and of the truth, in me is all hope of life and of virtue. Come over to me, all ye that desire me and be filled with my fruits; for my spirit is sweet above honey, and mine inheritance above honey and the honey-comb. My memory is unto everlasting generations. They that eat me, shall yet hunger; and they that drink me, shall yet thirst. He that listens to me shall not be confounded, and they that work by me shall not sin. They that explain me shall have life everlasting.Ecclus 24:23-31