“Open wide the door to Christ!” These words, spoken by Pope John Paul II in 1978, were also the theme for the great Jubilee year of 2000. Wherever Pope John Paul II traveled, he would often use these or similar words. These words are also an invitation to all of us, not only from the Holy Father, but also from our Heavenly Father to open our hearts to Jesus Christ and his great love for us.
The meditation below is from The Word Among Us Magazine for July 21, 2005. The meditation describes God’s desire that we would enter into an intimate relationship with him. As you reflect on these words, allow Jesus to touch your heart with his love so that you desire to give him your whole life.
Since the beginning of time, God has desired to fill us with divine life and to draw us into his embrace. He has desired that we have a relationship with him in which we learn from him, receive his countless blessings, and make this world into a more perfect reflection of his glory and his love.
Most of us are familiar with William Holman Hunt’s painting “Light of the World.” Hunt depicts Jesus as outside with a lantern knocking at a door. But the door has no knob on the outside, and Jesus can enter only when the person on the other side unlocks the door and opens it up.
An adaptation of Hunt’s painting shows a man behind the door. The man is huddled, paralyzed by fear and surrounded by darkness. But he does appear to be listening to Jesus’ invitation: “I stand at the door and knock; if anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and eat with him, and he with me” (Revelation 3:20). Obviously, this man has a decision to make.
Many of us have already heard the Lord knock at the door of our hearts and have opened the door. Perhaps we have opened the door just a crack and have gotten a taste of his goodness. But the door remains only partially opened, while Jesus wants us to open it wider and wider so that we might receive more and more from him. How tempting it can be to settle for a little when God wants to give us so much!
Brothers, our God is infinite. There is no end to his grace, his forgiveness, his wisdom, his mercy, or his blessing. There is no end to the divine life available to us as we remain humble and open to receive it. Even today, Jesus is knocking at the door of our hearts once again. Even today, he is asking each of us, “Are you hungry for more?” Do you believe there is more to receive?
“O divine Master, I want to respond to the grace you are offering me right now. Forgive me for the times I have not opened that door of my heart to you and tried to keep you at a distance. Lord, I want to be open to your will for my life today and always!”
(Maurice Blumberg is Executive Director of the National Fellowship of Catholic Men. This article is part of NFCM's sponsorship of the Catholic Man channel. Contact NFCM at P.O. Box 86381, Gaithersburg, MD 20886 or e-mail them at firstname.lastname@example.org. Many thanks to The Word Among Us for allowing us to include in this article the July 21, 2005 meditation from the July 2005 Edition of their magazine.)
Reflection Questions on Page 2
Questions for Reflection/Discussion by Catholic Men
1. How would you respond to the questions asked in this article? “Even today, Jesus is knocking at the door of our hearts once again. Even today, he is asking each of us, ‘Are you hungry for more?’” “Do you believe there is more to receive?”
2. How would you characterize how wide the door of your heart is open to an intimate relationship with Jesus? A crack, partially, fully?
3. Are you satisfied with how wide it is open? What steps can you take to open it even wider?