In the beginning the Lord God said: “Let it be.” And there was light; dry land and the seas; fruits and vegetables; a rich harvest.
And then there were human beings. In the image of God, they were created; male and female they were created. And God said, “Be fruitful and multiply; fill the earth and subdue it. Have dominion over the earth
and all the animals, the fish, and the birds. I give you all the fruits and vegetables to eat, a feast of rich foods. Take care of the earth and you shall be my people and I will be your God.”
But they said: “No. Let it not be.” “We will do it our way, not yours. We will have life on our terms, not yours.” And that is just what they got: sin, misery, suffering, and banishment from paradise. They lost sanctifying grace. They no longer lived in loving obedience to God. They were afflicted with ignorance, disordered desires, suffering, and death. Their relationship to each other was ruptured and became disordered. The earth no longer yielded its fruit easily. Food now had to be gotten by hard work and sweat.
But God did not give up on them. Already in Eden God promised a Savior.
And so, in the fullness of time, God sent the angel Gabriel to Nazareth, to a Virgin whose name was Mary. Gabriel announced to her that she should be the Mother of the long-awaited Savior, that she should be the Mother of God. And Mary said: “Let it be.” And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us.
At long last, a response is made to God in loving obedience. Mary makes herself, and all that she has and is, available to God to do his will.
When Mary pronounced her “Let it be,” the Word became flesh and dwelt among us for our salvation.
The Word became flesh for us to save us by reconciling us with God who loved us and sent his Son to be the expiation for our sins.
The Word became flesh so that we might know God’s love. For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish, but have eternal life.
The Word became flesh to be our model of holiness. “Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.”
The Word became flesh to make us sharers of the divine nature. The Word became man, and the Son of God became the Son of man so that we, by entering into communion with the Word, might become children of God.
And where do we enter into communion with the Word?
Where do we enjoy even now a feast of rich food?
Where do we get the strength necessary to grow up to the fullness of the stature of Christ?
Where do we get the courage to say in any and all circumstances: “Let it be”?
Where do we meet the Good Shepherd who calls us to himself, who gives us rest and revives our drooping spirit?
Where do we encounter the Good Shepherd who leads us in the right path from death to life?
How do we prepare ourselves to live in the Lord’s own house for ever and ever?
Right here. Right now. In this Eucharist, a royal banquet of rich food, the Body and Blood of Christ offered once on the cross for our salvation, and now offered daily on this altar as our rich food for eternal life.
For surely this is the day on which it can be said: “Behold our God, to whom we look to save us. This is the Lord for whom we look. Let us rejoice and be glad that he is saving us.”