In Our Hearts

First Reading: 1 Kg 10:1-10
Psalms: Ps 37:5-6, 30-31, 39-40
Gospel: Mk 7:14-23

“Who knows what evil lurks in the hearts of men?” So goes that
famous line from the comic book character The Shadow and how apt a
summary for today’s Gospel passage.

The Pharisees emphasized much on rituals and rules more than they
taught principle and meaning of what those rituals and rules meant.
They and the people they preached to were so caught up with these
rituals and rules that they neglected the spiritual sustenance of
their own souls.

We can go to Mass and pray the same prayers everyday but Jesus
reminds us that we should not depend on the Mass and the prayers we
recite to cure us from sin or should we recite them to make us
become holier, righteous people. The real us depends on what we
think and what we really value. It is from our hearts that we
achieve who we really are and how we influence those around us.

In the first reading we read how the Queen of Sheba was so impressed
by Solomon’s wisdom that she praised him and gave him expensive
presents. However the story ends with the queen returning to her
own country without really saying how she applied what she has
learned.

Let us ask ourselves today, how do we apply to action what we hear
from the mass and from the prayers we recite? Do we reflect and
seek the message and true meaning of Jesus’ words? Do we pray to
our Blessed Mother not because it is our habit to pray the Rosary or
because we ask for her intercession but because we want to feel her
presence and the love of her Son within us?

Finally, let us be reminded not to allow evil to lurk in our hearts
but rather to allow the goodness and purity of God’s love to grow
within us.

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