A new heart
One of the dominant biblical concepts is surely that of the heart. Contrary to what many might have thought, the biblical notion of the heart hardly refers to the emotional aspect of the human being. In effect, the concept of the heart is said to encompass a rather wide variety of elements, namely memories, ideas, plans and decisions.
This "insideness" of the human person outwardly manifests the moral state of the person who contains it. Thus, what is deeply hidden in one's heart becomes easily shown in one's external actions. Facial expressions (see Sir 13:25), words on the lips (see Prov 16:23) and actions (see Lk 6:44) can prove instrumental in detecting the innermost motives of the heart.
Duplicity of heart is something that the Bible utterly detests. For Ben Sirach a double faced person "will speak sweetly with his lips, but in his mind he will plan to throw you into a pit; ...will weep with his eyes, but if he finds an opportunity his thirst for blood will be insatiable" (Sir 12:16). Such a duplicity is strongly countered with a God who "search[es] the mind and tr[ies] the heart" (Jer 17:10). Hence, in front of his own unsound moral life, the human person feels the need to return to the Lord, who is the Ultimate Goodness, and prays to him with a humble and contrite heart: "Create in me a clean heart, O God" (Ps 51:10).
But in what way will the Lord create this heart? Besides the valid contribution of the prophetic movement, salvation history attests to the fact that a heart re-oriented to God becomes possible only by the salvific work of Christ. Christ's life, passion, death and resurrection were a constant calling for a regeneration of new heart. Those who believed in his word could not fail from proclaiming to their contemporaries: "Did not our hearts burn within us while he talked to us on the road, while he opened to us the scriptures?" (Lk 24,32). The good news is that such a heart is strengthened and protected with the coming of the Holy Spirit on us.
So let us ardently pray to the Holy Spirit to give us this new heart: "Come Holy Spirit, and fill the hearts of your faithful, and kindle in them the fire of Your Divine Love".