Daily Reflection for Friday, August 14, 2020
Peace and Blessings, Friends and Parishioners,
We encourage you to reflect on Friday’s readings at this link:
First Reading: Ezekiel 16: 1-15, 60, 63 OR Ez 16:59-63
Responsorial: Isaiah 12: 2-6
Gospel: Matthew 19: 3-12
Our Reflection on Friday’s readings:
“because of the hardness of your hearts” Matthew 19: 8A
The Bible often warns us to stay vigilant and guard our hearts from hardening to one another and to the voice of God. Hardened hearts break relationships, break covenants, and cut us off from God.
If today you hear his voice, harden not your hearts. Hebrews 3: 15.
For the heart of the people has become dull, without their ears they scarcely hear, and they have closed their eyes. Matthew 13:15 and Acts 28:27.
Webster’s Dictionary definition of a hardened heart is: to stop having kind or friendly feelings towards someone or to stop caring about something. To stop caring.
Hardened hearts are not kind and they do not see others through the loving eyes of God. Hardened hearts divide us in marriages, families and friendships, our communities, throughout our nation and across the world.
A hardened heart isn’t aware or doesn’t care. Therefore, it can do anything it chooses regardless of its effect on others. Someone once said the opposite of love is not hate, it’s indifference. It’s when we don’t even care. A hardened heart can believe whatever it wants because it doesn’t care about Jesus’s truth. Jesus told us he is the way, the truth and the life in John 14:6.
We have been warned through scripture and instructed by Jesus.
For me, this means encouraging my heart to feel kindness for all of God’s people. It means opening my heart to hear and follow Jesus’s teachings. To care.
This guarding my heart from hardening is a 24/7 job. There is no time off for pandemics, politics, family squabbles, illness, or anything else. It is exhausting to care about all people regardless of race, nationality, religion, sex, age, financial status, or personal power. Sometimes it easier not to listen. It is heartbreaking to be “aware” of hateful division. It would be easier to harden my heart and join the fight, hurling stones from my side of the fence. Or to give up and stop caring. But that is not what Jesus asks of us. He asks us to love, to care, to mend, and continue his ministry on earth. And he cared for us even on the cross.
Blessings to you,