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My Heart

My Heart

      We often observe people laying their hands upon their chests, mostly on the left side as they say “I feel it in my heart” or something of that nature.   Most are actually aware that the “blood pump” is not the source of one’s feelings, beliefs, or thoughts. Yet expressions such as “in my heart of hearts” is used by many to express the very essence of sincerity.    This particular phrase, “heart of hearts” is actually a mis-quote of Shakespeare’s Hamlet.   In that play, Hamlet actually says: “in my heart of heart”, which actually means: in the center of my heart, or from the center of my heart; the most tender part of my inner being. 

      We find the Spirit having Paul in Romans 10:1, write of a desire which was of utmost importance to Paul.   Brethren, my heart's desire and prayer to God for Israel is, that they might be saved.   However, the Spirit also had Paul write to show that “desiring” or “wishing” for a thing doesn’t make it so.    In that case, many of Paul’s nation lacked the knowledge needed from God’s Word that would enable them to become the sons of God.   Also, the Psalmist wrote as directed in Psalm 119:11: Thy word have I hid in mine heart, that I might not sin against thee.    This is the Spirit, through the Psalmist, showing that the “heart” of man, or where the thinking and learning process takes place is the mind. 

      This is readily apparent in the first part of Proverbs 23:7 which tells us: “For as he thinketh in his heart, so is he:”, and is evidenced by passages such as Genesis 6:5 where man’s thoughts were evil continually.   Another case in point are the many occasions where Pharaoh continually “hardened his heart” following his promising to allow God’s people, Israel to leave the land of Egypt as commanded by God.    What actually was taking place was that Pharaoh continually made up his mind that he would not allow God’s people to leave.   He made up his mind to not obey God.  

      To what have we dedicated our heart?   Since the Bible heart is the mind, we can easily ask the question: “To what have we dedicated our minds?”   Our service to God is not something we can approach in a lackadaisical manner.   That to which we have dedicated our minds (hearts) will be that which is of the most importance to us.  This is the same thing the Lord taught His disciples in Luke 12:34-35.  He said:  For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also. 35 Let your loins be girded about, and your lights burning;   He was telling them to make preparations, set the right example and keep focused in the right direction.  

     When we allow ourselves to lose focus we will begin to slip and will stray from the path the Lord would have us walk.  Those who have not focused their hearts on the Lord and His Word are putting themselves in danger of having their minds becoming blinded. Since we all have power over our own minds (hearts), if we are blind, we have permitted it.  Satan takes advantage of this to “blind” our hearts.  2Corinthians 4:4 clearly shows this.  In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them. Satan also uses temptation to accomplish his goals. James 1:14 shows that our temptations also come from within.  But every man is tempted, when he is drawn away of his own lust, and enticed. 

      So, how do I guard my heart (mind) from being led away from God?  We must take an active part to protect our hearts.  This is clear as the Spirit had Peter write to the scattered brethren in 1Peter 1:13, Wherefore gird up the loins of your mind, be sober, and hope to the end for the grace that is to be brought unto you at the revelation of Jesus Christ;   Another useful way in which we protect our hearts (minds) is have someone remind us of the solemn commitment we made to God when we obeyed the Gospel.  This is found in the second epistle of Peter.   This second epistle, beloved, I now write unto you; in both which I stir up your pure minds by way of remembrance:  2Peter 3:1

     In addition to being reminded, we have a personal responsibility in taking care of our heart (mind) that God gave us.   The Spirit had the apostle Paul give the Roman brethren advice regarding the mind (heart) which also is to be heeded today.  Romans 12:1-2 also tells us that we are to give our bodies and our minds (hearts) in sacrifice and service to God.   I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable serviceAnd be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God. 

     Are we looking out for our hearts?  In Ephesians 6:11 we are told to: Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil.   At the end of the list of the armament in Ephesians 6:18 we are told that prayer also is required if we will persevere.  Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for all saints;   A mind is a terrible thing to waste.    Prepare your heart (mind) for God. Your eternity awaits! 

                              Dennis Strickland – Mooresville church of Christ

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