Thursday of the 3rd Week of Lent; 23rd March 2017.
O that today you would listen to His voice! Harden not your hearts.
Hardness of the heart. When we have bitterness within us, we leave no room for forgiveness in our hearts and gradually grow a heart of stone. We may bottle up past hurts from loved ones and enemies alike to the extent we cannot see ourselves recieving forgiveness because we cannot offer forgiveness ourselves. Obedience to God’s word as Prophet Jeremiah encouraged us to do today cannot be achieved if we have possess such harden hearts. We might even block our chances of seeing God’s hands in the good done just as the people of hardened hearts did to Jesus in today’s gospel. Only by letting go can we come to God’s presence with a clear conscience giving thanks; only by giving in to the spirit of forgiveness can we kneel before the Lord who made us to ask for pardon; only with softened hearts can we fully receive his Holy Word and his Son’s Body and Body which gives life. We are called today to return to God with all our hearts, for He is gracious and merciful (Joel 2:12-13). Not with hardened hearts of course, for He gave us a heart of love when He created us, but if we should return with our stony hearts, He is willing to change it all and make it anew from which love and forgiveness will spring forth. May we listen to His voice this Lenten season and harden not our hearts.