by Ken Rolheiser
Love is God’s echo in us

A father and his boy are walking on the mountains. Suddenly, his son falls, hurts himself and screams: "AAAhhhhhhhhhhh!!!" To his surprise, he hears the voice repeating, somewhere in the mountain: "AAAhhhhhhhhhhh!!!" 
Curious, he yells: "Who are you?" He receives the answer: "Who are you?"; And then he screams to the mountain: "I admire you!";The voice answers: "I admire you!" 
He looks to his father and asks: "What's going on?". 
  The father explains: "People call this echo, but really this is life. It gives you back everything you say or do. Our life is simply a reflection of our actions. If you want more love in the world, create more love in your heart. Life will give you back everything you have given to it."

Being around anxious people can make you anxious. Psychologists tell us our brains mirror neurons that can pick up or reflect strong emotional signals of the people around us. Think of the most peaceful person you know and how you feel in their presence.

Science has proven that our emotional energy will radiate from our bodies and connect with everyone with whom we come in contact. Sometimes it is the smoke coming out of our ears that gives it away. To make our energy feel good to others we need to make it positive. Imagine a heart light inside our chests that can be turned on with a switch.

In “Heartlight” Neil Diamond sings
Turn on your heartlight
Let it shine wherever you go
Let it make a happy glow
For all the world to see

In Matthew 5:1-12 Jesus gives us the beatitudes as rules of the good life. Blessed are the peacemakers, the merciful, the clean of heart. Blessed are the righteous, the meek. The neurons that are mirrored around such hearts have power to change us.

How do we transform our old selves and renew God’s love in us? “Create in me a clean heart, O God; and renew a right spirit within me” (Psalm 51:10). Jesus promises us a new heart. “I will…put a new spirit within you; and I will remove the heart of stone… and give you a heart of flesh” (Ezekiel 36:26).

Love is the key in our lives. What are we building? Where are we going? How do we keep motivated to seek excellence and continue serving our neighbour and ourselves? 

St Paul in his letters to the Romans 12:11-13 says: “Never let the fire in your heart go out. Keep it alive. Serve the Lord. When you hope, be joyful. When you suffer, be patient. When you pray, be faithful. Share with God's people who are in need. Welcome others into your homes.”
The story is told of a retiring carpenter who had been working for a company for many years. His boss was sorry to see him go and asked him if he could build just one more house. The carpenter agreed, but his heart was not in it. He started using inferior materials and taking shortcuts.
When the carpenter finished his work, the boss handed the front door key to the carpenter and said, “This is your house, my gift to you.” The carpenter was shocked and embarrassed. If he had only known for whom he was building this house.
We build our own lives, and we should always do our best work. “If Yahweh does not build the house, in vain the masons toil” (Psalm 127:1).
(579 words)