It’s said you can tell where a person’s heart resides by looking at their checkbook. Certainly one’s checkbook indicates where their focus is. Another indication could be with the company they keep. Or with their internet records. Or …. When Jesus has our heart, people know where to find us and with whom. Who has your heart?
ETERNAL PERSPECTIVES by Sally Bair
The heart of the matter
My dad smoked from age 14 until his 70th birthday. He lived to be 95. My mom was 97 when she died. They took no vitamins, ate a diet typical of most Americans and exercised little. However, their hearts were healthy to the end, probably because of their genetic makeup. Yet we know that diet, exercise and living a stress-free life also can determine the health of our hearts.
We refer to the heart in ways other than the physical sense. We consider a kind person as good-hearted, big-hearted, or one who has a heart of gold. We learn we should follow our heart, have a change of heart or open our heart. We can lose heart, be sick at heart or broken-hearted. The long list of idioms about the heart indicates how much emphasis we place on the heart.
The Bible also has much to say about the heart. It can be sincere, trusting, willing, wise, steadfast and pure. It desires, rejoices, searches, believes and refreshes. It also can be evil, proud, wicked and deceitful. Our heart can despise, condemn, doubt, be as hard as stone, become confused and even die. It can grieve, yearn, be troubled and in turmoil.
Our spiritual heart needs to be healthy. Jesus said, “Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.” (Matthew 5:8) When our hearts are clean of impurities and sin, we will be blessed with God’s presence. Instead, if we allow our heart to be filled with self-love and other sin, it will be spiritually weak, develop a thin covering and easily become shriveled. Such a heart will turn others away.
“For the Lord does not see as man sees; for man looks at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.” (1 Samuel 16:7) A heart like that of Jesus is strong. In His ministry on earth, He always saw past the outer veneer into the heart. As His followers, our hearts also must expand and throb for the love of God and neighbor.
How can we be spiritually heart-healthy? “Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 4:7)
Lord, thank You for Your heart of love. Help us, through Your Spirit, to develop clean, loving hearts for You and for those around us. In Jesus’ name, amen.