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First Friday Reflection for June 2016

Statue Designed by Fredrick Brunner

How can we possibly love that much?

God gifts us with the wide expanse of love made incarnate in Jesus, especially depicted in this sacred image. Jesus’ outstretched arms seem to say to us: “Here is all you need to know, fingertip to fingertip.  All of creation receives the embrace of my love. I do not ration my gift of the Spirit. My Spirit I give to you.”

We know that nothing can separate us from Jesus’ embrace of love. Yet if we accept that gift, how must we respond? Saint Madeleine Sophie understood the depth and height, the length and breadth of the love of Jesus, and she urged a complete response of love in return: “Let love be your life for all eternity.”

But how in the world can we possibly love that much? Jesus’ way of loving is a model for our own. Everyone was welcomed into his life; everyone was invited to sit down at table.  Everyone could share in the conversation and partake of the banquet. Everyone could feel at home. Everyone. No exceptions. 

Everyone.  That, ultimately, is the meaning of Jesus’ outstretched arms. And that is the posture which our lives must model. Outstretched arms; the gift of relationship. No exceptions.

On this glorious Feast of the Sacred Heart, let us pray for this grace for one another:

          Gracious and loving God,

          as members of the family of the Sacred Heart,  

          help us to see how we can

                    be agents of love as an attitude of the Heart,

                    believe that You love the world through our personal encounters,

                    and trust that what can be done to bring love to our world,

                    must be done through us in the name of Jesus

                    and in the power of the Spirit,

                    now and forever.  Amen.



John and Catherine Kinabrew

New Orleans Associates