Lenten Devotional – TUESDAY, Mar 16: HEART

The ‘heart’ is the source of purity in this Beatitude. We might translate it as inner attentiveness to ethical intentions and spiritual seeking. And how this mindfulness shapes our outward actions. It involves cultivation of a faithful spiritual life. Richard Rohr observes, ‘When the heart is right, Jesus says, seeing will be right. He ties together heart and sight.’

The heart becomes a lens that directs perception and offers a focal point. The Expositor’s Greek commentary says, ‘That purity is in the heart, the seat of thought, desire, motive, not in the outward act, goes without saying from Christ’s point of view.’ As mentioned in yesterday’s reflection, mindfulness heightens the sense of the pure in heart. Others might miss the revelations that are available to those who become single-minded or whole-hearted in their quest to follow Godself.

In some faith traditions, such as the Sufi tradition, practitioners strive to immerse themselves in the presence of Godself, to lose all sense of boundaries and become deeply connected to the eternal. Such an experience may be fleeting, yet it is life-defining. Knowing Godself — or objectively to reach enlightenment — is the sole ambition of mystics and seekers across many traditions of the world.

The pure of heart, in this blessing, are promised to see God. This is, indeed, to attune oneself to a revelation that is beyond the reach of most people, since we’re distracted and Godself remains veiled from us, unless we pay attention. — Rev Gail

MEDITATIONS:

The awakened heart and mind can be experienced as clarity itself, pure knowing. — Jack Kornfield

Grown men can learn from very little children for the hearts of little children are pure. Therefore, the Great Spirit may show to them many things which older people miss. — Black Elk

… it almost surprised me the other day when something was said about the “fundamentals of the Christian faith,” and I thought to myself—“I think I know what those are.” Love God. Love people. It seems so simple and so obvious, but it took me three years of serious doubt, two years of study, an ongoing sense of skepticism, a trip to India, a blog, and a book to really figure this out for myself. … Love is fundamental. It’s more important than being right. It’s more important than having all our theological ducks in a row. It’s more important than any commitment to absolute truth or a particular hermeneutic or a “high view” (read: “my view”) of sovereignty or the Bible or faith or the Church. — Rachel Held-Evans

Blessed are the agnostics. Blessed are they who doubt. Those who aren’t sure, who can still be surprised. Blessed are they who are spiritually impoverished and therefore not so certain about everything that they no longer take in new information. — Nadia Bolz-Weber

Perhaps pure reason without heart would never have thought of God. —  Georg C. Lichtenberg

Challenge or Question: What spiritual practices have you used, that you find you desire to continue, that support bringing your whole heart into connection with God?

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