Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Mary, Untier of Knots

Mary, Untier of Knots (c. 1700), oil on poplar, by Johann Georg Schmidtner at St. Peter am Perlach, Augsburg, Bavaria.
It is not without good reason that Mary under the title of Untier of Knots is among the favorite devotions of Pope Francis.  Mary really is the Untier of Knots.   In Schmidtner's painting, she is all ease and serenity, and a smile even plays on her lips as she unravels the complicated mess in her hands.  There is not the slightest frustration or exasperation in her as she effortlessly undoes knots that the rest of us would just throw away or chop with scissors.  And notice that the freshly untangled ribbon is clean and smooth, without creases or tears or frayed edges.  That is because the Mother of God is not satisfied with half-measures.  Everything she does, she does exceedingly well and surpasses all human expectations.
Commit all your messes to the Untier of Knots.  I have committed a string of messes to her, and have not been disappointed.  Do the best you can with them -- grace builds on nature, so we have to do our part -- and then leave the rest to her.  She always obtains the best outcome for all concerned.

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