Thursday, August 09, 2012

Upon Their Hearts

Upon Their Hearts

August 9, 2012
Thursday of the Eighteenth Week in Ordinary Time

But this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, says the LORD.  I will place my law within them, and write it upon their hearts; I will be their God, and they shall be my people.  No longer will they have need to teach their friends and relatives how to know the LORD.  All, from least to greatest, shall know me, says the LORD, for I will forgive their evildoing and remember their sin no more.  Jeremiah 31:33-34

He said to them, "But who do you say that I am?"  Simon Peter said in reply, "You are the Christ, the Son of the living God."  Jesus said to him in reply, "Blessed are you, Simon son of Jonah.  For flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but my heavenly Father.  And so I say to you, you are Peter, and upon this rock I will build my Church, and the gates of the netherworld shall not prevail against it.  Matthew 16:15-17


A clean heart create for me, God;
renew within me a steadfast spirit.
Do not drive me from before your face,
nor take from me your holy spirit.
Restore to me the gladness of your salvation;
uphold me with a willing spirit. Psalm 51:12-14


Peter's relationship with Jesus has undergone change.  As the readings for our week began, we celebrated the Transfiguration.  The external perception of Jesus had changed among Peter, James and John.  They saw Jesus revealed differently. They heard the voice of the Father proclaim Jesus' new identity.  Yet, we know that they were still confused about what to do and what this all meant. 
Now, that change has been written on the heart of Peter.  Jesus of Nazareth has gone from being the carpenter's son, the itinerant preacher, and has become the Son of God. 
It is only through having a relationship with Jesus can our journey go from a prescribed, etched in stone, set of rules to an internalized, spiritual relation that is written upon our hearts.  Moses -- who appeared on the mountaintop at the Transfiguration -- came down from the mountaintop with the Ten Commandments chiseled into rock.  Jesus came down from the mountain with his love chiseled in the heart of his disciples.


How is your relationship with Jesus changing as you move through your day, your week, your journey, your life?  With some, as they endure hardships, they turn away from God.  With others, as they endure hardship, they turn toward the Lord. 
We will not get it right the first time.  Or maybe even the second, third or fourth time.  But what is important is that this relationship change, evolve, and grow.  If we allow the Lord -- through those around us -- to clean up our hearts and our lives, Jesus will remove any obstacles in the way of that relationship.

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