Join us on the fifth day of the Novena to Our Lady of Good Help, Queen of Families, in praying for the Gift of Understanding.
Gift of Understanding
Scripture speaks of Elizabeth and Zechariah’s litanies to the abundant fruitfulness of God. Although the aged couple was righteous in the sight of God and observed all His commands, they remained childless. While Zechariah was humbly offering incense in the Temple, the angel Gabriel announced that Elizabeth would soon bear a son named John. He would be filled with the Holy Spirit, even in his mother’s womb, and prepare the way of the Lord. Because of his disbelief, Zechariah’s mouth was tied until he announced his son’s name.
When Mary, pregnant with Jesus, entered the house of Zechariah, Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit and the gift of understanding. The child leapt in her womb and she asked, “How does this happen to me, that the mother of my Lord should come to me?” (Luke 1:43).
Elizabeth and Zechariah nurtured the forerunner of the Messiah and he grew in virtue and conviction. They prepared John for his mission as “The Baptist.” They also met sorrow and loss at his beheading.
Our Struggles Today
When faced with a pregnancy at an advanced or inconvenient age, so many women are conflicted or afraid. Society tells us these pregnancies are burdens that interfere with career, self-fulfillment and a comfortable life. We may fear that we cannot provide for yet another child, and that by welcoming one more, we will jeopardize the security of our existing children. This fear prevents us from understanding the heart of our Heavenly Father and His blessings.