COR THOUGHTS 241: A Heart That Gives Itself to Those in Misery

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Oh the misery of Job! This Sunday’s first reading is hard to take: “I have been assigned months of misery …. I shall not see happiness again,” laments this tortured servant of the Lord. The Church’s readings, however, don’t leave us dangling in that misery for long. Right away we hear the Psalm Response: “Praise the Lord, who heals the brokenhearted.” A broken heart is a heart prepared and open to receive the mercy of the Lord, like a bride prepared and open to receive her bridegroom. Mercy: the Latin is misericordia, which means “a heart that gives itself to those in misery.” Our misery, far from repulsing God, is what attracts his heart to us! This message of tender, loving mercy is the good news of the Gospel. It’s what compels St. Paul to say “woe to me if I do not preach it!” (second reading). “For this purpose have I come,” says Jesus in this week’s Gospel. For what purpose? To touch, kiss, and heal our misery. No wonder “Everyone is looking for you,” Jesus (Gospel). Grant us the grace to open wide our wounds to your healing, merciful love. Amen.