Devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus, in the last years weakens. Many people consider the image, litany and other prayers, songs, etc. of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, too sweet, trashy and emotional. Even the thought of repentance, which is associated with devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus, is not fit for many.
The heart is more touchy feelings than the mind. Therefore, the symbol of heart possibly does not express true feelings and all words with great meaning – heart, love, and “God” – tend to be diminished and abused.
The heart is, probably in all cultures, an expression for man’s interior. In many cases, a heart is an expression for a person, is innermost feelings and emotions, for thinking, and existence. The heart is crucial for understanding. This is expressed by unaccountable words and phrases. If anyone says: ”I lost my heart in Pittsburgh, Greensburg, etc.“, it is sure he would not find it in “Lost-and-found”.
When Samuel was sent by God to anoint David as king, God said to him: “Man sees the appearance but the Lord looks into the heart“ (1 Sam 16:7). In the Letter to the Ephesians the author asks: “May the eyes of your hearts be enlightened by God…” (Eph 1:18). (This thought poet Saint-Exupéry formed: “With the heart, one can see rightly.”) Jesus is “grieved at their hardness of heart” (Mk 3:5), found in many other places in the Bible.
The Bible says even about the Heart of God. It is written very nicely in the eleventh chapter of the Prophet Hosea. The Prophet leaves God to speak about His love to Israel and hardened hearts of people, and He, their God, had to destroy the nation because of their infidelity. Then God says: “My heart is overwhelmed, my pity is stirred.“ (Hos 11:8). The heart of God is more merciful than justice!
Mother Alphonse Marie venerated the Heart of Jesus, the fount of love. Characteristically for her was her esteem not emotion or self-centered, but, practical. It is written in the First Rule “Only the soul that burned with love for God’s suffering and abandoned humanity, tested by the fire of suffering, could take place the idea of such a rendition of work.” This is how the Sisters should act.
Spiritual Director Bernhard Weber