Friday, July 23, 2010

A Heart Like His by Father Thomas Williams

I enjoyed A Heart Like His by Thomas D. Williams and certainly agree with the idea that “You can know what’s on a man’s mind while never giving a second thought to what might be in his heart. But you can’t know a man’s heart without getting to know him.” (Thomas D. Williams)
The book is comprised of 32 simple meditations to encourage readers to think and pray about the virtues evident in Christ’s Sacred Heart and demonstrated throughout His life. The book is set up to be used in the month of June, traditionally dedicated to the Sacred Heart of Jesus, with one meditation for each day plus two extras.
Each day has a title which describes one aspect of Christ’s heart. For example, the first three days’ titles are: “a humble heart,” “a thirsty heart,” and “an undivided heart.” The reflections begin with a verse from Scripture, and there are Bible passages quoted throughout. There are two to four thought-provoking questions found within each day’s meditation, and the sections end with a personal prayer to the Father which includes the prescribed elements of praise, contrition, and supplication. The prayer at the end of each section has to do with the particular quality of heart described for that day.    
The book is well-written and is certainly a good source for examining the different qualities of Christ’s Sacred Heart. My only qualms about the book were that I found the lay-out and use of italics a bit distracting. I would have preferred to have the questions, which are quite poignant and great inspiration for discussion or journaling, appear at the end of the section rather than be in with the body of the text. The prayers at the end of the chapters would have been easier to read if they hadn’t been in italics. The only other drawback is that the book has on it the days of June, which I don’t think is necessary, because the book can be read at any time during the year. I understand that June is the customary month to celebrate the Sacred Heart, but mentioning that in in the introduction would have been sufficient in my opinion.
Williams is truthful when he refers to these meditations as simple. The writing isn’t complex, nor are the concepts he covers. I found myself thinking that perhaps the book was a bit too simple, but that would be rather appropriate, wouldn’t it? A work about Christ’s heart may seem rather unpretentious, because that’s how Jesus was/is. His heart was/is holy and wholesome. His Sacred Heart wasn’t/isn’t divided by sin, evil, or darkness. He embodie(d/s) every one of the ideal virtues for which we strive.
This book is a good study and easily accessible to the masses, just like Christ. This review was written as part of the Catholic books reviewer program from The Catholic Company.  I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.  Visit The Catholic Company to find more information on A Heart Like His.
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