Faith— 03/23/2023


By Father Frank Hernandez

“Return to me with your whole heart (Joel 2: 12).” Words from the prophet Joel as he speaks to the people of Israel of returning to their relationship with the Lord. It is not just a return to having trust in the Lord again, but a complete return of their being to God. Of opening their hearts to the Lord and having a deep, intimate relationship with Him again. To reaffirm their trust and love as He has with them in being the chosen people.

This message from Joel is a message for us as well. How can we return to the Lord again with our whole heart? This is true as human beings because of sin and temptation. As we choose to fall into sin and let the devil guide our lives. We turn our back to the Lord every time we decide to follow the devil.

Sometimes, we decide to leave the Lord because we have decided the Lord does not hear or help me in my life or I come to the realization that the Lord/God is not real. We decide to govern our lives as human beings. Plus, the views of the world on religion influence that relationship with God as well. We feel we do not need to have a relationship with Him, I can manage that myself. We can manage that ourselves, but we have to live a good and moral life following His example, whether we believe it or not.

As we get close to the celebrations of Holy Week and Easter in a few weeks, how can the words of the prophet Joel inspire us to evaluate our lives and see how we can return to the Lord again. To see the wrong that we have done in our lives. Of not being kind to others, not living the example of Jesus, not sharing the Lord’s love with myself and others. To say in a real way in our hearts, “Lord, I have failed you in my life, how can I return to your love again?” All of us have something we can change in our lives, something that stops us from loving our family, friends, the Lord and ourselves.

The words of the prophet should echo every day in our lives. How can I return my heart to you Lord again? How can you heal me from my pain? More importantly, how can I feel your love in my heart though I am a sinner?

May we have a true conversion these next few weeks before Easter and may our hearts return to the Lord again.


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