Heart Matters

I heard a sermon today by the late Adrian Rogers from the Love Worth Finding radio program that reminds me of the true condition of the human heart. It was part of his sermons on the beatitudes. This sermon was on “Blessed are the pure in heart…” and titled “Integrity: Don’t Leave Home Without It.”

He was preaching from Matthew 5: 8, but spent most of his time in Jeremiah 17: 9-10

The heart is more deceitful than all else and is desperately sick. Who can understand it?  I, the LORD, search the heart. I test the mind, even to give to each man according to his ways, According to the results of his deeds.” [NASB]
I’ve heard sermons on this subject numerous times before. But, today it prompted me to remember the tremendous price paid by God through the shed blood of His Son, Jesus Christ, for me and the surgery He has done on my own heart. I cannot even begin to imagine what a mess I would be without him. And yet, more often than I care to admit I pull on the sutures of God’s love, mercy and grace causing unnecessary injury not only to my heart, but to my whole being.

One of the things Pastor Rogers said was that our hearts are so deceptive that often we don’t even know we are deceiving ourselves. I would agree. I tug on a suture, just a little. I tell myself “It’s nothing to worry about. It is just a little white lie or little jealousy or a little gluttony.”At that very point, the first little tug of a suture, I am deceived.

It reminds me of when I was a little kid and I would scrape my knee. In fact when I was in, I think it was the fourth grade, I fell during recess (chasing a boy I think) and scraped up both my knees. I wore a large size band-aid on each knee for several weeks and I didn’t run much because it hurt. In addition, I had a horrible habit of picking at the scabs as my knees were healing and that prolonged the healing process. What was crazy that fourth grade year is that once my knees did heal, I promptly fell during gym class (being held out on the blacktop) and scraped both knees again. Again the big band-aids came out and again I prolonged healing by picking at the scabs.

This cycle continued throughout the entire year. I still have scars on my knees, thanks to my clumsy tomboy antics and my constant pulling of the scabs. The same is true of my spiritual heart. I prolong complete healing with all my pulling and tugging of God’s sutures and the result is scaring. Praise God the scars are not permanent!! That is just how great my God is!!

The King James translates the phrase, “I test the mind,” in verse ten as “Try the reins.” Pastor Rogers states that this is in reference reins controlling or directing a horse. So God is saying He is testing what controls and directs us, which is the seat of our being, the mind and heart. I cannot separate mind and heart, they work in tandem. And it is what comes out of ‘the seat of my being’ or my actions that God will give to me accordingly. It’s all connected.

I don’t know that I will ever wrap my head around the fact that the God of the universe is so intimately involved with me. But, I am having a wonderful time trying!

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