Give Him Your Heart.
PRAYER BEFORE MEDITATION.
My God, I firmly believe that Thou art here present. I acknowledge that on account of my many sins I am utterly unworthy to appear before Thy sacred countenance. Yet, confiding in Thy infinite goodness and mercy, I venture to address Thee, to call upon Thy holy name, and meditate upon Thy commandments, in order that I may acquire a better knowledge of Thy holy will, and accomplish it with more fidelity. Wherefore enlighten my understanding that I may perceive what I ought to do or leave undone for the promotion of Thy glory and my own salvation; at the same time excite my will, that I may repent with my whole heart of my past sins, and resolve for the future to do all that Thou requirest of me. Grant me above all to know Jesus, my divine Teacher and Guide, more clearly, that I may love Him more dearly, and consequently labor, struggle and suffer with greater generosity and self-sacrifice in imitation of His example. Holy Mary, Mother of God and my Mother, show Jesus to me now, and let me study thy divine Son to the salvation of my soul. Holy Guardian Angel, keep far from me all distracting thoughts; my patron saint, come to my assistance. Amen.
My son, give Me thy heart. Prov. xxiii. 26.
God desires your heart more then anything else. Has He not indeed said: “My son, GIVE Me thy heart?” Notice that God wants you to give Him your heart, and not merely to lend it. He would be its real and permanent owner. He wishes to dwell there and to possess it, not for a certain time, but for ever, not as guest only, but as its Master and its Lord. He would be the sole proprietor of your heart, in order that the homage, praise, submission to His will, and thanksgiving, which you offer Him, may come from your heart; for the heart is the source of all good, as of all evil, and God claims your heart because He wishes you to be wholly His. It is not surprising that He should claim you wholly, since He has first given Himself wholly to you. He then who gives his whole heart to God gives himself wholly to God. But to offer it to the Lord only from time to time, when we please, and to take it back again as soon as we like, is not giving, but lending it.
God desires you to give Him your heart, and not to be content with letting Him have it on hire. To hire out one’s heart, is to offer it to God with a view to temporal reward. You who act from so ungenerous a motive, listen to these words of the holy Gospel; they apply to you: “Receperunt mercedem suam – they have (already) received their reward.” If you serve the Lord from worldly interests, for reasons of health, or through vainglory, you hire out your heart, offering it to Him only on account of the reward which you expect.
Neither will God have you sell Him your heart. Those who serve God solely for the sake of Heaven and its rewards, sell Him their hearts. Without doubt, the happiness of Heaven is no other than God Himself, yet this kind of love and this exclusive desire of reward are too imperfect, for it is above all in your own interest that you long for this blessing that will make you happy. In the enjoyment of Heaven, you see but a life without sadness or sorrow, wherein all joys and consolations abound, and which is shielded from anxiety and from everything distasteful. If this is the motive that leads you to love and wish for Heaven, if you serve God only to procure these benefits, you sell your heart, since you would not serve Him if you did not hope by this means to obtain everlasting happiness. Truly such a love seeks itself too much! Wherefore the Lord wants you to give Him your heart, and to give it to Him so completely that you will (if possible) wish never to receive anything in return. It is not for yourself, but chiefly for God that you should serve Him, in order that, all-perfect as He is in Himself, He may receive praise and honour from you. Give then your heart to God. It is not right, honourable, or profitable for you to give your heart to anything that is not God, for to Him alone we owe all that we are, and He wishes for nothing but the heart. When He possesses it, He is content.
Oh that so many men, who throw away their hearts upon I know not what, would give them at last to their good Master, who is their best friend, their Saviour, and their God!
PRAYER AFTER MEDITATION.
My God, I give Thee heartfelt thanks for all the graces and all the light Thou hast conferred on me during this meditation. Pardon me all the negligence and the distractions of which I have been guilty, and give me strength to carry out the resolutions that I have made. Fortify me, that from henceforth I may diligently practise this virtue . . . avoid this fault . . . perform this action . . . to Thy honor. Help me to do this, sweet Virgin Mary; and if I ever forget my good resolutions, I entreat my Angel Guardian to recall them to my memory. Amen.
Of Obedience and Subjection.
I. It is a very great thing to stand in obedience, to live under a superior, and not to be at our own disposal.
It is much more secure to be in the state of subjection, than in authority.
Many are under obedience more out of necessity than for the love of God; and such as these are in pain, and easily repine.
Nor will they gain freedom of mind, unless they submit themselves with their whole heart for God’s sake.
Run here or there; thou wilt find no rest, but in an humble subjection under the government of a superior.
The imagination and changing of places have deceived many.–Thomas à Kempis–Imitation of Christ Bk I, Ch IX pt 1.
June Devotion: The Blessed Sacrament and the Sacred Heart of Jesus
Virtues to practice: Obedience, Piety, Dutifulness
Prayers to the Wound of the Heart of Jesus.
Blessed be the holy Wound of Thy Heart, my most sweet Jesus! Accept, O Lord, my heart and all the powers of my soul. Detach them from earthly affections. Let me lose even the remembrance of the things of this world. Cast my soul into the adorable Wound of Thy Side, into the ocean of Thy love, into the source of true life. Unite my heart for ever to Thy tender Heart, so truly that it will be impossible for me to desire what is not in conformity with Thy will. May I in all things entirely renounce my own will, and unite myself by faith, hope and charity to Thee, my Lord, my God and my Creator. Amen.
O most sweet Jesus, through the Wound of Thy Heart, pardon, I beseech Thee, all my offences against Thee by acting without sufficient purity of intention, or by following my own perverse will. I offer Thee my heart, that Thou mayest unite it to Thy Heart. Then I shall neither seek nor see anything but Thee in all things. I shall have no other will than Thine. Amen.
Jesu! Creator of the world,
Of all mankind Redeemer blest,
True God of God, in Whom we see
Thy Father’s image clear expressed!
Thee, Saviour, love alone constrained
To make our mortal flesh Thine own,
And, as a second Adam, come
For the first Adam to atone.
That selfsame love which made the sky,
Which made the sea and stars, and earth,
Took pity on our misery,
And broke the bondage of our birth.
O Jesus! in Thy Heart divine
May that same love for ever glow!
Forever mercy to mankind
From that exhaustless fountain flow!
For this the Sacred Heart was pierced,
And both with blood and water ran –
To cleanse us from the stains of guilt,
And be the hope and strength of man.
Jesu, to Thee be glory given,
Who from Thy Heart dost grace outpour,
To Father and to Paraclete
Be endless praise for evermore. Amen.
An indulgence of 5 years. A plenary indulgence on the usual conditions, If this hymn is devoutly recited every day for a month (S.P.Ap., March 12, 1936). (Raccolta)
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