[Lenten Booklet] Closer to the Heart of Christ! Week 2

THE HEART THAT FEELS

Each day, the course includes a short word, a short text from the Bible and a small action for you to take.

The prayers for the 2nd week (28th of February to 6th of March 2021) is  to be found in this article. Every week you will have a new article with the reflections of the week. 

You can also follow our Facebook page, where we will post the prayer of the day. 

Sunday

Our heart is woven of emotions, of passions. When a situation hurts us, we say it “breaks our heart”. If a close friend suddenly becomes distant, then we are “heartbroken”. Feeling a deep joy or a fleeting exhilaration “fills our heart”. Or when we are sad, we are “heartbroken”.

Feelings, emotions make us capable of compassion, wonder, being capable of feeling and experiencing love. They are the mark of our incarnation and are wanted by the Creator. However, we might be tempted to believe that our feelings are the superficial part of our being. Our emotions do indeed manifest themselves within us, but sometimes without our clear consciousness. Everything in us is not simply a will that is transparent to itself.

And God saw that it was good…

Whether we have a “valiant heart”, an “artichoke heart”, or a “cardboard heart” (Vianney, thank you for that – nl.French singer who introduced the expression in one of his songs), this week, let’s fully embrace everything we feel, confident that our emotions have a place in our lives and are part of our identity. Let us be sure that they are capable to awake in us a heart burning with charity.




Monday: Marvel!

What a prodigy our heart is! Experiencing an aversion for something or an attraction for someone, allows us to orient our existence, but also to progress in the gift of ourselves.

Action: Jesus, knowing their thoughts, says to them: “What thoughts do you have in your hearts? “I note the three emotions that I consider to be positive and that characterise me the most (joy? kindness? gentleness? compassion? …). I let my gratitude for this flow out!




Tuesday: Welcome!

Our emotions and impulses are morally neutral. For example, feeling a sexual urge is neither good nor bad, it is a living force. How do we welcome them?

Action 1:Didn’t our heart burn as he spoke to us on the road and explained the Scriptures to us? “(Lk 24:32) I became aware of a difficult situation with someone, which was unravelled from the moment I expressed what I felt. (Attention! Giving thanks for having broken your neighbour’s face is not a complete adjustment! Accepting and expressing that we are angry is different from getting angry inappropriately)

Today, I express through a message, a gift, a few words or a visit, my renewed love for this person!

Action 2: I note two emotions that I find difficult to take on (shyness ? anger ? melancholy ? emotionality ? sensitivity ?). I decide today to welcome them as a full part of me.

Wednesday: Make it grow!

“Why do you harden your heart as the Egyptians and Pharaoh hardened their hearts? “(1S6:6) Today, I am taking a step to unify my being and make my emotions bear fruit. Do I have to express more of what I feel, or on the contrary should I take the time before reacting? Am I on edge or impassive?

Action: God asks the prophet Jonah: “Are you right to be angry about this castor? “(Jon 4:9). I am remembering an anger I had. I meditate on the different possibilities for managing this anger: was I right to be angry? What would have been the right thing to do? How could I have done it?

1/ I react immediately without controlling it.

2/ I repress my anger, but it bursts out in another circumstance and on other people.

3/ I recognise and welcome my anger (conscience) and :

– I accept it and I decide to get angry because the situation seems serious ;

– I filter it and express it in another way;

– I defer it without repressing it because it’s not the right time.

Action: Today, I am attentive to similar situations in which I am likely to manifest these same emotions. I prepare myself to deal with them accurately.

Thursday : Deploy!

Emotions and feelings are a treasure that requires discernment to use them in the service of the real good. Let’s evaluate! I meet a wounded person on the pavement: what is my emotion? Indifference? Curiosity? Feeling of disgust? Fear? Pity? My feeling reveals who I am and at the same time supports and energises my decision to act.

Action: “Do everything you have in your heart, listen only to your feeling, here I am with you ready to follow you. “said a servant to David (1 Sam 14:7). Today I live my day listening to the good that my own heart inspires in me. I make sure that I act with kindness, towards others and towards myself.

Friday :Assume your emotions in the service of Love!

A free man is not a man who has no emotion, but a man who is deeply attentive to it in order to energise his charity. If I feel a great joy, I can discreetly spread it to others. But how I do it will be important. If I am not careful, I can also “splash” my joy on them and embarrass them, or even hurt them deeply.

Action:When Jesus saw the crowds, he was seized for them. “(Mk 6:34). In which Gospel does the emotion of Jesus seize me? (I can take Mk 6:30-44, for example). I contemplate the delicacy and radicality with which, motivated by this emotion, Jesus was able to console people.

Saturday: Day of Proofreading

It is in sensitivity that the deepest and oldest wounds are found. However, this affective zone is made to participate in the gift of ourselves and to accept the love of others.

Action: Today, I take a time of silence to reflect on the great events of my life that have repercussions on my way of being. If some of them are painful, I rejoice that they have helped to build the man or woman I am today, capable of compassion and caring.

© Sanctuaire du Sacré-Cœur, Paray-le-Monial

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