The words, “You have come to heal the contrite,” are spoken in the penitential rite of the Mass. These words got me to thinking about Your reasons for coming to us. With due respect to the seriousness with which, I am sure, these words were studied and included in the Mass, it seems to me that they describe more of a side-effect.
It would be my perception that You came for expiation and example, both flowing from a supernatural love. Our willing and sincere contrition opens us to the healing of Your expiation; and Your example draws us to seek connection with the Father. Without contrition our doors do remain sealed against Your knocking. Unless there is genuine sorrow for all the manifestations of our flawed nature, the door remains sealed to Your expiation and example. Those are the gifts on the table on the other side of that door. To give us these gifts is why You came. We can either accept or reject them. That choice is totally on us.
For contrite hearts, there is healing. But there is something which precedes contrition; something from which it flows. In the three years of Your ministry You performed miracles for people who may or may not, at the time, have been contrite. What You asked for first was faith. Gratitude and contrition can flow from that; and after the pain and suffering of Your expiation, contrition blossomed. You taught us first to be believers. When we believe we take to heart what Your example showed and what You taught. This renders us not only open to Your expiation, but also to contrition.