August 4, 2022
Each day, I reflect upon a word or a phrase from or inspired by the readings of the day. I encourage you to do the same and perhaps incorporate that word or phrase into your daily prayer.
“…write it upon their hearts; I will be their God, and they shall be my people.” (Jeremiah 31:33)
Responsorial Psalm: “Create a clean heart in me, O God” (Psalm 51:12)
CLEAN HEART: I will be leading a retreat today for the teachers and staff members of St. Maria Goretti Catholic School. At the retreat Mass, I will share these thoughts in my homily:
God’s grace is all around us. It is ALWAYS all around us. Why do we experience that grace at times and feel anxious and alone – Godless – at other times? It has to do with the condition of our hearts.
The grace of God can only enter a willing heart, an open heart. The Responsorial Psalm asks God to prepare our hearts, to clean away anything that might impede that grace: bitterness, hatred, intolerance, anger, stress, anxiety, fear, etc. This is echoed in another familiar Psalm (95:8): “If today you hear His voice, harden not your heart.”
On the other hand, an open or clean heart gives God’s grace access. With that access, God shares His love with us – He “writes it on our hearts.” There is an intimacy to this – us opening our hearts to God and God writing “I love you!” on our hearts.
What is the state of our hearts? We are called to let go of anything that may impede access to our hearts. That is not easy, so we pray: “Create a clean heart in me, O God.”