THE SACRED HEART OF JESUS
(A biblical reflection on Solemnity of THE SACRED HEART OF JESUS – Friday, June 11, 2021)
Gospel Reading: John 19:31-37
First Reading: Hosea 11:1,3-4,8-9; Psalms: Isaiah 11:2-6, Second Reading: Ephesians 3:8-12,14-19
The Scripture Text
Since it was the day of Preparation, in order to prevent the bodies from remaining on the cross on the Sabbath (for the Sabbath was a high day), the Jews asked Pilate that their legs might be broken, and that they might be taken away. So the soldiers came and broke the legs of the first, and of the other who had been crucified with Him; but when they came to Jesus and saw that He was already dead, they did not break His legs. But one of the soldiers pierced His side with a spear, and at once there came out blood and water. He who saw it has borne witness – his testimony is true, and he knows that he tells the truth – that you also may believe. For these things took place that the scripture might be fulfilled, “Not a bone of Him shall be broken.” And again another scripture says, “They shall look on Him whom they have pierced.”(John 19:31-37 RSV)
“One of the soldiers pierced His side with a spear, and at once there came out blood and water.” (John 19:34)
What can we say about the Sacred Heart of Jesus? It’s a heart that overflows with the love of God. From this heart, which was pierced at Calvary, flows a torrent of grace – a crucified, merciful, burning, passionate love flowing out for you.
The love within Jesus’ heart is a crucified love because it gives everything and does not let even the deepest pain hold it back from loving. It’s a love that chooses willingly and joyfully to suffer for those whom Jesus loves. This is why most images show the Sacred Heart surmounted by a cross and surrounded by thorns. No pain, no suffering, was too much for Jesus to bear – because He wanted you to live with Him.
The Sacred Heart of Jesus overflows with a merciful love. It is a never-ending fountain of mercy and forgiveness, and day after day, Jesus pleads with us to open the doors of our hearts to this mercy. Don’t shrug it off! Let His love envelop and embrace you, especially when you are most in need.
This is a heart that overflows with a burning love. Images usually depict flames of fire coming out of Jesus’ heart to symbolize the intensity of His love. This amazing fire of divine love changes, transforms, and purifies everyone it touches. It can ignite a fire even in you, empowering you to love Jesus in return and to go on to love others as He does. Don’t be afraid to let this burning love consume you. Let it transform you into the very image of Christ.
Finally, the Sacred Heart of Jesus overflows with a passionate love. It is not lukewarm or wishy-washy. Believe that Jesus eagerly longs for you! He wants to be with you, to embrace you in your joys and comfort you in your afflictions. Learn how to welcome this passionate love into your heart, and you will know an intensity and depth of love that you would have never before thought possible.
Prayer: Lord Jesus, I adore Your most Sacred Heart! By the power of Your Holy Spirit, ignite the fire of Your love in me. Make my heart like Your own – overflowing with crucified, merciful, burning, and passionate love for You and all Your creatures. Amen.
Jakarta, 10 June 2021
A Christian Pilgrim