Hello again, Willing Spirits!
It’s the longest day of the year and we’re not exactly in the position we expected to be in terms of lockdown restrictions but we are alive and well so we thank God for that! I hope your week was great and yesterday (Father’s Day) was too! Whether you have a physical father figure in your life or not, God is our Father also!
It is said that in terms of versatility, our tongues are the strongest muscle in our bodies. But it is the heart that controls the movement of the tongue to create the words that we say. This is what this week’s verse states. Whatever is in our hearts; whichever emotions, thoughts etc. will determine the things we say. The bible describes the human heart as ‘…deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked; who can know it?‘ [Jeremiah 17:9 NKJV]. So the common phrase of “follow your heart” may not be in our best interest if our hearts are not pure.
Countless of times in the bible, the tree is used as an analogy for us followers of Christ. In this context, Jesus explains that we will know if a tree is bad or good by its fruit. In other words, we will know if someone is good or bad through the things they produce–say because we speak from the heart at all times. Even if we are aware of it or not, everything we say is a result of how our heart is set up. So it is impossible for an evil person to speak good things as the first part of this week’s verse states: ‘…How can you, being evil, speak good things?…’.
This is why we are told ‘…guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it.’ [Proverbs 4:23 NIV]. Every day, our hearts are exposed to many things contained in this world. As followers of Christ that’s a big problem because this world is full of sin so our hearts need 24/7 protection. Luckily for us, God has the ability to ‘…give you a new heart and put a new spirit within you…’, He ‘…will take the heart of stone out of your flesh and give you a heart of flesh‘ [Ezekiel 36:26]. This doesn’t mean one literally has a heart of stone, obviously, but that the heart is hardened towards God just like how Pharaoh‘s was in Exodus. It refuses to obey, follow and be like Him. By God giving us a heart of “flesh“, we are susceptible to the love of God.
God understands how the human mind and heart works so He has offered a solution to make it easier to follow Him in a sin-filled world. He loves us that much. We just need to ask Him for it. By cleansing our heart of all impurities, things like swearing, cursing or saying bad things upon our lives or the lives of others, becomes almost impossible to do. Or even the thought to do so would not cross our minds. We will realise that even our thoughts too will be renewed.
But it doesn’t stop there. In order to maintain said renewal, we must continue to fill our hearts with the goodness that is the word of God, God‘s presence and prayer and stay away from things that may counter these or pollute the righteous atmosphere. That means all negativity and sin. When our hearts are pure, we are able to radiate that purity, that glow from the inside out. It is then that the glow from within–that is God—will be visible for all to see. This is how we, as followers of Christ, draw others to God. By producing good fruit which can only be possible if our hearts are good too.
If you haven’t already, or even if you need a do-over, ask God this week to take your heart of stone and give you a heart of flesh. One that longs after Him. To renew His Spirit within you and renew your mind in Jesus‘ name. It all starts from within.
Have a lovely week and I hope to see you again next week, God willing!
-A Willing Spirit x