God reveals Himself to us and carries out the work of our salvation through becoming a man. He takes on our human condition; He gives us His love and enables us to act with that same love. This is the infinite love that God Himself is.
The message Jesus gives to St. Margaret Mary Alacoque, a simple nun in late sixteenth-century France, follows this same story of God’s infinite love. That is, divine love comes to us through Christ, who takes on our own human flesh, and has a human heart. This love desires nothing short of our salvation and sanctification.
The humanity of Christ is necessary for our reception of God’s infinite love, and for our ability to live out that love in our own lives. Jesus and His Sacred Heart are the image of God, the infinite love.
Why does it matter that God becomes a man? First and foremost, because we are God’s living image. With the gift of human choice and freedom, God enables us to become a more perfect image of Himself (God, The Infinite Love, p. 91). Through the fall, humankind rejects, disobeys, and forsakes God–our creator and model. We are in need of salvation. So, God, in His infinite love, loves us so much and desires to save us–to restore us towards perfection as His living image–that He takes on our flesh, our human nature, and gives us the gift of a perfect living image of Himself.
The words of St. Vincent Pallotti remind us of the greatness of this gift: “Oh my God, my infinite and incomprehensible love, my eternal, infinite, immense and ineffable mercy, what moved You to grant me such a gift but your infinite love, infinitely merciful?” (God, The Infinite Love, p. 84).
The gift of God’s infinite love is poured forth through Jesus Christ. We know that for any human, the heart is the source of good and evil, love and unlove (Luke 6:45). So, for Christ, fully God and fully man, His Sacred Heart is the source of God’s infinite love for the whole world and all humankind.
The humanity of Jesus–especially the model of His Sacred Heart–changes our hearts and allows us to live our lives with the infinite love of God. Pallotti writes, “Jesus sanctifies, improves and enriches, with His infinite merits, all the words, thoughts and deeds of our life” (God, The Infinite Love 99).
God has revealed Himself to us and saved us, through sending Himself. Jesus Christ, the Word become flesh, models for us how to be living images of the infinite love that is God Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. In our daily lives, we are called to be conformed unto Christ, and to be the images of infinite love which we were created to be–for ourselves and for others. Let us do so through modeling our hearts, words, thoughts, deeds–and thus our whole lives–after Jesus Christ and His Sacred Heart.
St. Vincent Pallotti. God, The Infinite Love. Translated by Flavian Bonifazi, S.A.C. Baltimore, MD: Pallottine Heritage Center. 1967.