Valentine’s day in our house consists of making valentine’s boxes and filling out cards for classmates. We express our love to family members by making little hearts and handing out chocolate boxes — which is especially welcomed since Lent hasn’t begun!
These things are nice, but we can learn a lot more from the Sacred Heart to have a more meaningful Valentine’s Day. We need to keep our eyes on Christ to focus on TRUE LOVE, and nothing says Love more than… The Sacred Heart. Jesus Christ’s physical heart represents His divine Love for all of humanity.
This devotion grew in popularity and importance in the Church when St. Margaret Mary, in the 1670s, received visions from Jesus. Christ said, “Behold this Heart which has loved men that it has spared nothing, even to exhausting and consuming Itself to testify Its love; and in return, I receive from the greater part only ingratitude, by their irreverence and sacrilege, and by the coldness and contempt they have for Me in this Sacrament of Love.”
We can summarize this powerful statement with, “Jesus invites us to receive His Love and share that Love with others.” St. Margaret Mary and her visions help us to see that God’s love is stronger than evil. We must not be afraid but rather turn to Christ and be willing to have a spiritual heart transplant so that we can be transformed by love.
1. Focus on Christ- Centered love.
Jesus tells us in Matthew 11:28, “Come to me, all you who labor and are burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am meek and humble of heart, and you will find rest for your souls.”
Jesus wants us to know that we can come to Him and our true rest is when we rest in Him. How do we do this? Prayer is our daily fuel and Jesus never wants us to feel burdened. Meekness isn’t weakness.
Embrace the virtues of Jesus, meekness, and humility, you will be transformed. For Paul, it meant stripping away the old self to take on a new life in Christ (Colossians 3:9-11). Choosing to embrace the virtue of humility, to put aside arrogance, and to be kind and open to others. Another similar Greek word for meek is expressed as a decided strength of disciplined calmness. So Meekness isn’t weakness! Jesus invites us to be humble and follow His ways and in return, we will experience true Gospel joy.
2. Expose and Honor His Heart so you can be blessed and build up the Civilization of Love.
I love the work I do promote this devotion at WelcomeHIsHeart.com. I see firsthand amazing things happen when couples put Christ in the center of their life, their family, and their heart and welcome the Reign of Christ. I believe we can rebuild, restore and renew society through this Christ-centered devotion.
“Consider building a covenant of Love. Welcome the presence of the Heart of Christ, entrusting your home to Him. Before the open heart of Jesus, we seek to draw from Him the true Love that our families need. The family unit has a fundamental role in the construction of the civilization of Love.” – John Paul II, Oct. 5, 1986
3. The wounded Heart of Jesus, Heals us.
We turn to the Heart of Jesus for healing and know that His MOST wounded heart is the source of healing and hope for all. Every person matters; there is hope for every soul to be transformed by Love.
We must humbly turn to His heart, seek forgiveness and learn to forgive others. Don’t let the past hurts chain you, but be free to love Christ as He loves you. Receive His Love and Healing.
The Heart of Jesus calls us to be holy and grow sensitive to the matters that hurt and offend Jesus.
4. Remember to always Be clothed in Virtue.
“Expressing in ourselves the sentiments that were in Jesus Christ, putting on Jesus Christ” (Phil. 2:5; Rom. 12:14), reforming our hearts after the example of His, for it is by this reform that the work of Christian sanctity begins, continues and is achieved.”
To reform the heart- we need to flee from vice and strive to practice virtue.
Strive for virtue, not fame or wealth. Virtue is the backbone to our holiness, and often the progress in this area is very slow… baby steps more like it. The goal is that we don’t backslide. So what virtues are like the Heart of Jesus? All the Christian Virtues flow from His Heart, in particular Faith, Hope, and Love.
5. The Heart of Jesus is what calms our storms in life, sheds light and love into situations, and helps us to experience life with gratitude and joy!
Be grateful for all the Lord gives you! On our way to school each morning, we pray to the Sacred Heart, thank God for something, and pray for something. This little act helps us recall that this devotion should lead us closer to Christ.
Allow this day to be a day of celebration of what is true Love. We are blessed to be Catholic Christians, and we can experience the true gift of Love. We can’t express our deep love for Christ in the Sacred Heart without mentioning the Holy Eucharist – where we can be united with Christ and His Love.
By Emily Jaminet the Director of www.WelcomeHisHeart.com. Her most recent book is Secrets of the Sacred Heart and she can be found at www.EmilyJaminet.com.
Click below on the link to listen to Emily discuss this article on Relevant Radio’s program, Morning Air.