A hardened heart is an ungrateful heart. A hardened heart is a heart that is blind to the blessings and the miracles that have happened to it. When our hearts are hardened we live as if the faithfulness of God in our lives is a myth or as if the miracles of our lives never really happened.
In the first reading, the Israelites asked a very disturbing question: “Is the Lord in our midst or not?”. How can they ask this question with all the Lord had done for them. Had they forgotten all that the Lord did for them in Egypt? Had they so easily forgotten the parting of the Red Sea? This is often our story. When we face obstacles or problems or challenges, we begin to lose faith in the one that has always saved us, even when experiences tell us that God is eternally faithful. We begin to ask: “where is God?”, even when He has never left our side. Their hearts were hardened; ours is too.
But God is faithful and He never gives up on us. Even when our heart is as dry as the rock of the Mountain Horeb, He can still bring forth water from our dryness. St. Paul describes this kind of love that never gives up. He tells us that the proof of God’s love and fidelity to us is that while we were still sinners, while there was nothing lovable or beautiful in us, He died for us. The Lord died for us even after we had turned our backs at Him and left His side. He loved and loves us that much.
The gospel, Jesus and the Samaritan woman, shows us how Jesus breaks all protocols, all traditions, all walls and obstacles to reach us. He tells us that if we all knew what God is offering us, our lives will never be the same. He digs within the hardness of our hearts and finds there an ever flowing spring – the gift of the Emmanuel – A God that never leaves our side.
So, do not harden your hearts as you go through this season of Lent. Let us allow the Lord to create a spring of ever flowing river within the deserts and wilderness of our lives. Let us do this by loving, forgiving, trusting and caring for someone today. The Lord will never give up on us until every darkness in our lives finds His light; until every sadness in our lives finds His joy; and until every doubt and fear in our lives finds His faith.
May God give us the grace to never harden our hearts to His words. May God bless you with a grace-filled Sunday.