The Sacred Heart of Jesus and my sinful hands

The Sacred Heart of Jesus and my sinful hands

 

 

The Son of Man must be delivered into the hands of sinful men…Luke 24:7

 

 

This is a Scripture I often recall as I take communion to the hospital on my pastoral care day; for after all … this is what I am,

a sinner and yet ~

The Lord allows me the privilege of working along side Him–meeting extroidinary people who, in their sickness and suffering, have blessed me beyond measure. 

 

The halls of the hospital are foreboding; sometimes I feel their heaviness like a weighted fog that hovers it’s threat of loneliness, grief, suffering and death. And that’s when I ‘m thankful that wrapped in the case against my heart is the body, blood, soul and divinity of Jesus. It’s into this darkness I accompany Him every week, trusting only in the mercy of His Sacred Heart.

 

There are so many encounters. I share them for one reason: to illustrate the mercy of God, despite the cracked vessel that carries Him.

You never know what a day will bring. The most incredible encounters are, inexplicable, unexpected, unplanned, unscripted and they often leave me wondering if angels don’t wander the halls defying the darkness. 

 

I’m remembering an encounter I had one morning not too long ago. My boss asked me to stop by a room on the third floor and spend time with an elderly patient who was driving the nurses crazy. Apparently, she was leaning on her call button, complaining about everything, crying non stop and mumbling things no one had the time to understand.

 

How old is she? I asked.

92 … he whispered

 

As I prayerfully approached her room, I thought to myself;

 

I’d be mumbling too, if I was stuck in a hospital bed at 92.

 

The minute I saw her I noticed her frailty and as I pulled a chair to her bedside, she took my Benedictine cross in her arthritic fingers,

 

“I should have been a nun.” she exclaimed.

“Oh? Tell me why you think so…” 

 

Instantly, the conversation intensified as she remarked that perhaps, if she would have done as the Lord wanted, she wouldn’t have suffered so much in her life..

Then, I invited her to tell me her story.

 

She had lost three husbands to cancer, but the deepest sorrow of her life was witnessing the drowning of her three year old daughter…

It happened before she could get to her…It happened with the little girl clothed in the precious pink dress her dear aunt had sewn for her and it was the outfit in which she was buried. Tearfully, she described the memory of that day and how all these many years it has haunted her. She told me the agony she suffered has never lost it’s sting, so as a consolation for this sorrow, she had asked the Lord for a special favor.

She requested that on the day she was to die, the Lord would let her hear a knock at the door…by this she would know it was her lovely daughter come to take her to heaven.

It was hard to hold back tears as she continued her story. 

 

Once, in her lonely days as a widow–alone and expecting no one–she was resting in her condo, when suddenly she heard… a knock.

 

“I was so excited,” she gleamed. “I was sure the day of my homecoming had arrived.”

 

But, oddly enough the knocking was at her window.

 

She thought,

 

“Well, I suppose if I’m going home to Heaven, I can leave as easily through the window as the door.”

 

However, as she approached to see who was knocking, she was met ….by the window cleaner.

At a loss for words to continue describing her desperate hopelessness to me, she gave way to full blown sobbing.

 

It was at this point, I asked if we might pray together. It wasn’t a fancy prayer, just one that attempted to convey the merciful love of our Savior, assuring her that Jesus loves her and knows well her pain.

Then, she received the Eucharist and suddenly the spiritual darkness seemed to take flight, not only in the room, but in her heart.

As she dried her tears, I gently encouraged her to be confident that one day she would see that lovely daughter again and perhaps she will meet her at Heaven’s door in that pretty pink dress.

 

“Yes, I will have to wait till Heaven to see her because my sight is all but gone.”

“My dear…” she hesitated. “May I ask you a question?”

“Of course you may.”

“What color are your eyes?”

Softly, I answered. “They…are brown. ”

 

The color of her little girl’s eyes.

 

“Ah, she said,” You had no way of knowing that. Only the Blessed Mother and Jesus know how much that means to me.”

“For the first time in almost 60 years, I have finally found peace.”

 

The hands of sinful man cannot bring light to darkness…but, we can accompany Him on whatever mission He sends us ~

that He might set His people free.

 

Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, Have mercy on us.

Immaculate Heart of Mary, Pray for us.

 

+PAX

 

  • See also: 5 reasons to adore the Sacred Heart of Jesus
  • Photo source

 

 

9 Comments

  1. Nancy
    Jun 7, 2013

    I am speechless. All I can say is thank you for sharing this.

  2. Victor S E Moubarak
    Jun 7, 2013

    Thank you so much Caroline for taking Communion to the sick in hospital. Thank you.

    God bless.

    • Caroline
      Jun 7, 2013

      Victor and Nancy…God bless you for appreciating what the Lord is willing to do for His people…despite the vessel.
      Blessings always and +

  3. Cynthia
    Jun 7, 2013

    I am new to your wonderful blog and am struck on so many levels! This particular post is so beautiful and heart wrenching. What a gift you are for our Lord’s hands and Sacred Heart. May He bless you always…Thank you for sharing.

    • Caroline
      Jun 7, 2013

      Cynthia, Thank you so much for visiting and taking the time to comment. It’s a joy to share what God is still doing for His people despite all the news to the negative that surrounds us. What a gift the Eucharist is.
      I hope you come back soon.
      Blessings always and +

  4. Joyce
    Jun 7, 2013

    What a gift you were given Caroline because you give so much of yourself. Since we’re reading from Tobit this week, I think of Sarah burying 7 husbands. But to bury a child – what a Cross this woman has carried! And for a little while, what a balm you were to her broken heart, as you are always to mine.
    Blessed Feast of the Sacred Heart and much love!
    Joyce

    • Caroline
      Jun 7, 2013

      Joyce, Every week I’m there, I think of you and how many stories over the years you must have.
      Yes, this dear woman seemed trapped in her pain….if not “but God” (two of my favorite words in Scripture) she may have remained there longer. She yet had the picture so vibrant in her mind’s eye.
      Thank you for being a balm to my heart many times more

      Much love on this feast of the Sacred Heart and blessings always +

  5. Patricia
    Jun 10, 2013

    Caroline, I too am speechless! Your tenderness with this dear woman was truly the loving kindness of the One you were carrying over your heart. How beautifully you phrased it: “And that’s when I ‘m thankful that wrapped in the case against my heart is the body, blood, soul and divinity of Jesus.”

    Caroline, imagine the gratitude of Jesus to you, who so lovingly carry Him to those who need Him most!

    Someday, I wish you would write a book containing your hospital stories. They are truly beautiful, and so very inspiring. Thank you for sharing them. And thank you for being the precious person you are. Much love and many hugs…

    • Caroline
      Jun 10, 2013

      Patricia…I really write the stories to illustrate how gracious and merciful the Lord is despite the cracked vessel that carries Him …(that’s me..LOL) I grumble about going sometimes and I really don’t like being in the hospital, but this is where’s He’s called me. And despite that He still let’s me go with Him; what amazing love.
      I pray I won’t have extra time in Purgatory for my grumbling.
      Every time I get home, I repent and thank Him for the privilege of meeting such precious people.
      Love you too and hugs+

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