“You have made us for Yourself, oh Lord, and our hearts are restless till they rest in You.” These are well-known words of Saint Augustine, from his Confessions. The human heart is restless indeed, often leading us down wrong roads. Remember that old country song, “Looking for Love (in All the Wrong Places)”? Another song from the 90’s, “Constant Craving (has Always Been)”?
We hear now the Lord confronting this in his day. He had been casting out demons and working extraordinary healings, yet people still asked for a sign to believe. So, He says, “This is an evil generation: it seeks a sign.”
Our generations certainly suffer peculiar forms of the restless heart that we don’t know how to deal with. They especially affect families. I confess it in my own life.
Though from a faithful Catholic family, when I got on my own, I wasn’t wise enough to be prepared for the voices calling me away from Christ, and from the truth and values I’d known. It really hurt my parents. My restless heart sent me searching for years till finally the Lord found me! In the meantime, I learned much so that I know something of these voices of wolves in sheep’s clothing that prey on our deep desires to be free, to be loved, and to be understood. There’s a false idea of individual liberty that’s really self-centered that’s wreaking havoc today, especially in family life.
We are searching. Often, we don’t realize that the Lord made us for Himself! It’s so important in Lent to remember, to return to this. To try to plumb the depths of our restless hearts. Certainly, COVID has hugely challenged our restless hearts … yet know that the Lord is searching for you!
“No sign will be given except the Sign of Jonah.” Jesus Himself IS the SIGN OF JONAH, who spent 3 days in the belly of the tomb, not just a whale, who calls us to turn to Him to find rest. At the foot of the Cross with Mary we find out who He is: Love incarnate who wants to live in our hearts and homes. Living this way of Christian faith each day, especially in our families isn’t always easy but JESUS IS THE SIGN THAT INDEED HAS BEEN GIVEN. His is the way to the love our restless hearts search to live for and to find peace.
Especially through time each day in Family Prayer during Lent, may you and your family together open the door to the One who longs to bring peace to your restless hearts!
To view Rosary prayer and Mass streaming live, please visit our Facebook page at 11:30 am EST, Monday – Friday. Please invite your loved ones to join us too! (You don't need a Facebook account to view.)
About Father Jim Phalan, C.S.C.
Father James Phalan, C.S.C., is a Catholic priest, member of the Congregation of Holy Cross and the National Director of Family Rosary. He served as a missionary for many years travelling the globe to help people come to Jesus through Mary as part of the Family Rosary team. Now he is happy to be serving back at home in the USA!