“My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever.” Psalm 73:26
Today is World Heart day. A day dedicated not only to pay homage to the thousands of heart patients and to raise awareness of heart disease and prevention of the same but also to salute the thousands of doctors involved in their tireless and selfless efforts to ease the pain of their patients with their skilled knowledge and noble touch thus contributing to their recovery and well being.
This day is also known as Dress Red day, the color used to represent the heart and the tiny red ribbon worn in solidarity to this cause. Heart Management is the main highlight and focus of the present times with the alarming and growing trends in the global population afflicted by this disease.
How would one define a brave heart? Perhaps, one who has gone through the physical and emotional trauma attached with all the undesirable symptoms brought on by a heart ailment and still fighting the race in bold courage with a strong spirit on an ongoing daily basis. Of course, not forgetting those who fought the race till the end and having succumbed to this disease now lives in an eternal paradise with the Lord where suffering is abolished forever.
Maybe a higher definition of brave heart would be the physical and agonizing pain which our Lord went through, when His own heart suffered on the cross and the final piercing of His Sacred Heart in which love for entire mankind was enfolded.
A cheerful heart is good medicine as we read some interesting verses in the book of Proverbs:
- “Above all else, guard your heart, for it is the wellspring of life.” (Proverbs 4:23)
- “As water reflects a face, so a man's heart reflects the man.” (Proverbs 27:19)
- “Hope deferred makes the heart sick, but when the desire comes, it is a tree of life.” (Proverbs 13:12)
- “A merry heart makes a cheerful countenance, but by sorrow of the heart the spirit is broken.” (Proverbs 15:13)
- “Anxiety in the heart of a man causes depression, but a good word makes it glad.” (Proverbs 12:25)
It would do well to remember that it is only the Lord who heals our diseases, who accomplishes the work of the physicians on earth to perfection. The reward and smiles is both ways; to the doctor who has cured and the patient who is healed. This life giving situation can only be brought about by the Lord working from above. As Isaiah depicts in 58:8; “Then your light will break forth like the dawn, and your healing will quickly appear; then your righteousness will go before you, and the glory of the LORD will be your rear guard.”
A sure consolation for all those suffering is found in Psalm 41:3; “The LORD sustains them on their sickbed and restores them from their bed of illness.”
I have always been a person who has invariably given the heart top priority and neglected other medical issues. Today, I wish to express my deep gratitude and thankfulness to all those medics who helped make some of the difficult days of my life easier for me, who were always there for me when I needed them, specially during distressing days of hospital confinement, who helped bring the smile back on my face with their healing powers and of course, last but not the least, the Great Physician who worked through all of them to give me relief and healing.
Till date, the one scene that I cannot bear to witness and which I have seen not just once but over a dozen times is an ambulance with its lights flashing and siren in full blare caught up in a traffic jam. My thoughts keep going to the person lying inside for whom every second is precious in order to save life. Somehow the others driving on the road seem unmoved and make no effort to give way when they are fully in a position to do so in order to let the ambulance pass.
May we always be sensitive to the needs of the others in the environment around us and may our prayer be joined to the one as written by St. Paul in his letter to Ephesians 3:16-18; “I pray that from his glorious, unlimited resources he will empower you with inner strength through his Spirit. Then Christ will make his home in your hearts as you trust in him. Your roots will grow down into God’s love and keep you strong. And may you have the power to understand, as all God’s people should, how wide, how long, how high, and how deep his love is.”
May the Lord always graciously bless our hearts with His uplifted Hand as we are after all a part of His very own Heart!