So I’m sitting in the chapel this morning (on the feast of the Sacred Heart) praying and the question sort of pops into my head: how can you find or live joy through imitating Christ’s Crucified Heart? I mean, the gospel for today has Jesus on the cross being pierced in his side; and when we look at images of the Sacred Heart, most have a cross and crown of thorns. So it’s easy to understand the reparation angle and the love angle. And of course love and joy go together, but how?
First of all, in Christ’s Crucified Heart I find joy in being accepted and loved unconditionally. In his Heart I find a secure refuge which becomes a tabernacle for mine. There I find peace from the storms outside and from those within. There I learn for whom and for what I was created for. There I discover his love for me.
Then imitation: I can discover how to respond to his love and imitate his Heart. This second joy is that of being able to love and sacrifice myself for others, to become for souls a shield and a refuge. This joy is of suffering service, of bearing wounds of love in a battle that Christ has already won (there is no greater honor or grace). This is the joy of my heart being opened with a lance so it can grow, thus increasing my capacity for love and for joy. Christ’s Heart doesn’t worry about its own wounds because it burns with passion for the Father and for others.
The final and greatest aspect of the joy of Christ’s Heart? I think it must be that of seeing God. Jesus tells us in the beatitudes that the pure in heart shall see God. But there is only One Heart completely pure, completely worthy and capable of seeing God.
I must put on his Heart, beg him for his Heart;
hide myself in his Heart;
learn to think and feel as his Heart;
learn to see as his Heart.
This is PURE JOY, what I’ve always longed for and the reason for which I was created.
Photo Credit: Lawrence OP