A Hardened Heart and A Loving God

This upcoming Sunday’s psalm includes the verse,

“If today you hear His voice, harden not your hearts.”

I often picture a stone heart when I hear this antiphon; a stone heart unable to be bruised, but also unable to pump blood, give life.

I wondered how my heart could be hardened after hearing the voice of God. If anything, it would seem more likely that my heart would be soft, mushy, ready to be imprinted with words of guidance and wisdom. Ready to be shaped into a vessel for hope and loving action.

At least that’s what I hope.

Hearing God’s Voice

I often do hear the voice of God. I hear God of course speak in the Holy Mass, with the words of Scripture and in the Eucharist. I hear God in the voices of the homeless and suffering.

I realize that sometimes I have to fight the temptation to harden my heart due to the weight of His words, the weight of love. Many of us have experienced heartbreak, sadness, or any event that has caused us to turn inwards and let our heart become stone, out of fear of letting it be hurt again.

Harden Not Your Hearts

With the love of God, however; an all great and powerful love, we can walk in the confidence that He will not let our trust in Him be unfulfilled.

When we are asked to not harden our hearts, it means to be open to the voice of God guiding our lives and molding us into becoming better people.

That is why the second Sunday reading after the psalm is especially important;

“…Whatever other commandment there may be,
are summed up in this saying, namely,
‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’
Love does no evil to the neighbor;
hence, love is the fulfillment of the law.” (Romans 13:8-10)

Let’s accept the challenge to guard our hearts against fear; to be ready and willing to be shaped.

Daniel Quintero is a newlywed husband, writer, and avid karaoke singer. He currently attends Prince of Peace Catholic Church where he volunteers in the lector ministry and with faith formation. His favorite motto: “Awkwardness does not exist.”

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