The Sacred Heart of Jesus

Matthew 11: 25-30
Dt 7: 6-11 / Ps 103: 1-4, 6-8,10 / 1 Jn 4: 7-16

Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.
(Matthew 11:29)

No burden is too heavy,
No task too hard to serve the Lord,
Love always makes the job easy,
With God’s Kingdom as our reward.

At that time Jesus said, “I praise you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because you have hidden these things from the wise and learned, and revealed them to little children. Yes, Father, for this was your good pleasure. All things have been committed to me by my Father. No one knows the Son except the Father, and no one knows the Father except the Son and those to whom the Son chooses to reveal Him. Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.” (Matthew 11: 25-30)

Reflection

Jesus invites us to share in His yoke of the cross by willingly accepting the burden of Christian stewardship or ministry that we may find ourselves in. By submitting to His call we will learn from Him – how to be gentle and humble, like His Sacred Heart- and in the process grow in wisdom and understanding, live in harmony and love with other men, and find real peace in this world.

No man ever lived (and loved) without a cross to bear. This is the yoke of original sin that all of us, descendants of Adam, inherited from our first parents. But when we answer the invitation of Jesus to ‘take on His yoke’ – in the name of love, for His Sacred Heart – our own yoke actually becomes lighter. Like a pair of oxen bearing a common yoke, Christ becomes our partner in carrying our trials and difficulties in life. That is why those who are kind-hearted and generous have an easier time going through life even if they seem to have heavier crosses to bear. Love makes their load lighter and their journey in life easier. St. Augustine wrote that in all instances, those who do not love feel their trials as “great severities”; whereas those who love others endure the same, but they do not seem to feel them as severe. “For love makes all, the hardest and most distressing things, altogether easy, and almost nothing.”

In today’s first reading, Moses exhorts the Israelites to follow the will of God in all fidelity, saying, “It was because the LORD loved you and kept the oath he swore to your ancestors that He… redeemed you from the land of slavery, from the power of Pharaoh king of Egypt. Know therefore that the LORD your God is God; he is the faithful God, keeping his covenant of love to a thousand generations of those who love him and keep his commandments” (Deut.7:8-9)

St. John gives a similar advice on love in today’s second reading: “Dear friends, let us love one another, for love comes from God. Everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God. Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love.” (1 John 4:7-8) May the Sacred Heart of Jesus increase our devotion to Him, the Father and the Holy Spirit, and inspire us to be more loving of others as well.

Lord, may our hearts be joined with Your Sacred Heart, so that they may also be filled with love, and the glory of the Father be revealed to us. In Your service we have found rest, and in Your cross we have the hope of eternal bliss. Amen.

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