The Most Sacred Heart of Jesus
Ezekiel 34:11-16; Psalm 23:1-6; Romans 5:5-11;Luke 15:3-7
“There will be more joy in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous people who have no need of repentance.” (Luke 15:7)
The heart has always been recognized as the essence of a person, the place where someone’s deepest desires, longings, and fears reside. The heart is also known as the wellspring of our love. There are a number of phrases that express this centrality of the heart. For instance, we say, “Let’s get to the heart of the matter,” “I am putting my whole heart into this activity,” or “Take what I say to heart.” We say, “I love you with all my heart,” and when things don’t go well, we say, “You have broken my heart.”
Today the Church celebrates the feast of the Sacred Heart of Jesus. It’s a day to recall how deeply Jesus loves us. It’s a day to recall that he poured out everything so that we could be saved, every last drop of his blood. And because he gave everything so willingly, his sacrifice was the perfect offering of love.
But we don’t just recall Jesus’ love manifested way back then on Calvary. Today and every day, Jesus continues to pour himself out for us, offering us his grace, his peace, his consolation, his mercy, and—most of all— his love.
Today’s Gospel reading shows another dimension of the Sacred Heart. The image Jesus used of a shepherd willing to leave the flock in search of the lost sheep tells us that he is willing to risk everything for the sake of one lost sheep. That’s how earnest he is about bringing home those people who have lost their way.
Brothers and sisters, Jesus loves everyone. He suffers over everyone who has strayed from him. He rejoices over everyone who turns back to him—and so does everyone in heaven. So take some time to fix your eyes on Jesus today. Focus on his Sacred Heart. Let him speak words of love to you. Let him convince you that you are precious in his eyes. And then, listen as he asks you, “My child, will you now go out and be a messenger of my Sacred Heart to all the lost sheep?”
“Yes, Lord, I will go. Make me an ambassador of your love!”~WAU