Excerpt 10
Heart of Jesus, Rich for All
Who Invoke Thee

WE CALL people rich if they possess an abundance of the wealth of this earth, money, lands, houses, factories, and the like; but we also speak of men as rich in virtue, knowledge, experience. In whatever sense we take the word, the Sacred Heart of Jesus is infinitely rich, and, what is of special interest to us, It is rich for us. While the rich of this world often guard their riches carefully, hold on to them tenaciously, and communicate them to others sparingly, Jesus is eager to distribute His riches lavishly to all who ask Him.

Infinitely Rich

Even the richest men of this world own only a very small portion of the wealth of the earth. Moreover, all their possessions are uncertain, depending upon many conditions beyond their control. Thousands of rich people have been impoverished in consequence of depressions and wars. And even the richest must leave it all behind in death. The riches of Jesus are not subject to such limitations and uncertainties. Because all things were made by Him, He is absolute and permanent owner and master of all things. His are all the gold and silver and precious stones, the coal and oil buried in the bosom of the earth. His are the grass of the meadows and the grain of the fields, the birds of the air and the fish in the water, all living beings on the face of the earth.
Besides all these material riches, Jesus has the spiritual riches of truth and grace. He knows all truth because He is the Truth; He possesses all virtue, because He is the abyss of all virtues; He possesses Divine immortal life because He is the Son of the almighty, living God. We see these riches of Jesus displayed in the doctrines of our holy faith and in the Sacraments and blessing of our holy Church. It is these riches that St. Paul has in mind when he writes, "I give thanks to my God always concerning you for the grace of God which was given you in Christ Jesus, because in everything you have been enriched by Him" (1 Cor. 1:4 f.).

Invoking Jesus

Whereas the rich of this world are generally anxious to keep what they have, Jesus is most eager to let us share in His riches. The initial gift of prayer He bestows upon us even without our asking, and the amount of the gifts He offers is unlimited. "Ask and it shall be given you; seek and you shall find; knock and it shall be opened to you.  . . . Or what man is there among you, who, if his son asks him for a loaf will hand him a stone? Or, if he asks for a fish will hand him a serpent? Therefore, if you, evil as you are, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in Heaven give good things to those who ask Him" (Mt. 7:11 ff.).

One thing must be borne in mind. Jesus is most eager to bestow His gifts upon us, but He will not grant our petitions when they would be harmful to our soul. A good mother will not give her child a loaded revolver or a bottle of poison, no matter how much she loves him nor how insistently the child may ask for it. Jesus is our Saviour; He cannot give us things that would ruin us. But He will give something else instead, something conducive to our salvation.
Material vs. Spiritual Riches

Jesus loved poverty and called the poor in spirit blessed. With all the goodness He showed to the poor during His earthly life, we do not read of a single instance when He bestowed material wealth upon a person, not even upon His holy Mother and His foster father. He Himself wished to be poor, poor in His childhood, poor in His public life, but poorest on the Cross. Thus He impressed upon His followers the truth that material goods possess no value in themselves, that they have been created solely for the purpose of assisting us in saving our souls and that only for this purpose should they be asked for.

On the other hand, Jesus is most eager to bestow spiritual riches upon us. The very fact that He revealed His Sacred Heart to us proves His eagerness to share the gifts of His love. The wonderful promises He made to St. Margaret Mary for all those who would foster devotion to His Sacred Heart cannot but fill our souls with grateful joy and unlimited confidence. We are assured of all graces necessary for our state of life, peace in our homes, comfort in affliction, special assistance in the hour of death, forgiveness and mercy for our sins, blessing for our undertakings, spiritual fervor, our names written in His Sacred Heart forever.
Convinced of this love of the Sacred Heart, we will gladly leave it to Him to answer our petitions as He sees fit. If our prayers, especially for temporal favors, are not heard, we will know that what we asked was not for the best, and that we shall receive something better, an increase of His grace and love which brings with it an increase of heavenly glory, the essence of which is the possession of Him Who is our God and our All.



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