Tag Archive | heart

Hindsight 20/20 – #5 – The Orphan Heart

How do we make these steps of recognition, and quality choices that work for us?

We cannot blame others for, or refuse to look at, the darker parts of our hearts.

They are our responsibility.

But how you ask?

We read in post #4 that God’s word judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.

So let me make a suggestion beginning there, where the thoughts and intents begin.

We are so unaware of our heart condition, that we can’t even know that the words, and deeds done to us, and around us in our past, have clogged up our arteries.

Not with physical crud (although this may be true) but with spiritual crud.

Sludge that pulls at us, and weighs us down with anger, and depression, and anxiety galore.

We can have problems with our bodies, and have them fixed.

After that we keep going, but if our heart stops, we’re done.

Let’s look at what the Word of God says about how our hearts SHOULD be;

Galatians 5:22-23 says this – 22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness, self-control.

If these things are evident in our life, we begin to clear our our spiritual arteries.

Never mind clearing them all out at once.

No one can do that!

But how about picking out the one you see lacking the most in your life.

Here’s my example.

It’s where I started.

I started with love.

It was THE most glaring lack that I could see.

I was “Looking for love in all the wrong places”.

If I did not recognize love from someone, I could not learn how to do it myself, much less, get it right.

I must say that the wrong ways I learned, took a very long time to un-learn.

It was a vicious circle filled with all kinds of wrongness.

None of which fulfilled my need.

I then met Jesus.

I learned about how He loved me, even if if others did not, and even if I could not.

I learned how He loved me, in a way that was different than any other way that I had tried.

I began to study His word, to learn about the ways He loved me.

The change in my heart was not overnight, but with continued seeking, reading, and learning, I began to feel some of the darkness melt away.

Ezekiel 36:26 says – And I will give you a new heart, and a new spirit I will put within you. And I will remove the heart of stone from your flesh and give you a heart of flesh. 

That old mindset tried every once in a while to creep back in and tell me how unlovable I was, and at that point I had to remember what I had learned.

The old attitudes in my heart certainly kept it as hard as it could be.

My heart needed to be hard to “protect” me, or so I believed.

That protection was a racket – and kept me imprisoned until I began to let that light shine in to the dark corners.

I had to repent in and of that darkness, and begin to practice new behaviors in accordance with my new found beliefs.

My thoughts, my words, and my deeds began ever so slowly to change.

I had to, and still do sometimes, have to actively remember that He knows me, and He loves me.

I placed the helpful verses He showed me at the end of this post.

Next I moved on to self control, and then to joy, which are both stories for a different time.

Taking on one thing at a time from this positive list, caused me to be able to see a great lessening in the list from the “flesh” mentioned in post #4.

Psalms 139 O Lord, you have searched me and known me!
You know when I sit down and when I rise up;
    you discern my thoughts from afar.
You search out my path and my lying down
    and are acquainted with all my ways.
Even before a word is on my tongue,
    behold, O Lord, you know it altogether.
You hem me in, behind and before,
    and lay your hand upon me.
Such knowledge is too wonderful for me;
    it is high; I cannot attain it.

Where shall I go from your Spirit?
    Or where shall I flee from your presence?
If I ascend to heaven, you are there!
    If I make my bed in Sheol, you are there!
If I take the wings of the morning
    and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea,
10 even there your hand shall lead me,
    and your right hand shall hold me.
11 If I say, “Surely the darkness shall cover me,
    and the light about me be night,”
12 even the darkness is not dark to you;
    the night is bright as the day,
    for darkness is as light with you.

13 For you formed my inward parts;
    you knitted me together in my mother’s womb.
14 I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made.

Wonderful are your works;
    my soul knows it very well.
15 My frame was not hidden from you,
when I was being made in secret,
    intricately woven in the depths of the earth.
16 Your eyes saw my unformed substance;
in your book were written, every one of them,
    the days that were formed for me,
    when as yet there was none of them.

My prayer is that you can let the love of God begin to flow into your heart as well.

A little at a time, or a lot at once.

The speed isn’t the issue, it’s the quality of the decision to do so.

Until next time …

Hindsight 20/20 – #4 – The Orphan Heart

Steps to help heal the orphan heart.

The first step that must be taken to heal the orphan heart, is to RECOGNIZE that we have one.

After recognition, we must make a quality choice to change our heart.

There are many different ways I am sure to make these recognitions, and choices.

I can only share with you the ones I have personally used.

My source of help came from many lists.

These lists I found, over the years, through Bible reading.

It was only when I went seeking to learn about my orphan heart that I began to connect all the dots.

Hebrews 4 says this;

12 For the word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart13 Nothing in all creation is hidden from God’s sight. Everything is uncovered and laid bare before the eyes of him to whom we must give account.

What this means is that the word of God can be used to learn the absolute truth.

God sees it all, and like in the old days when cameras had film, once that film was exposed, it could never be used again.

Once my heart has been exposed to the word of God, if I pay attention, the past can never be used on me again.

The most obvious list, would be the Ten Commandments;

The Ten Commandments can be found in Exodus 20, and reads like this;

That looks pretty straight forward right?

Some other lists I found were equally as straight forward, and although not very appealing to my senses, I found them to be true, none the less.

19 Now the works of the flesh are evident: sexual immorality, impurity, sensuality, 20 idolatry, sorcery, enmity, strife, jealousy, fits of anger, rivalries, dissensions, divisions, 21 envy, drunkenness, orgies, and things like these. I warn you, as I warned you before, that those who do such things will not inherit the kingdom of God.

This list was found in Galatians 5.

I can only say Ouch.

Now obviously, I (and probably you) am not guilty of all of these things, but I (and probably you) am guilty of at least some of these things.

Honestly, if you are guilty of them, it may, or may not be your fault.

Some of the things on this list are standard fare for the world we live in today.

Much has been unknowingly passed down from generation to generation, because of a lack of knowledge of what God requires.

Honor, respect, responsibility, in many cases, has never been taught.

Our hearts have grown up as orphans, without proper father training.

Here’s the thing; Now it’s been exposed to you, and you can begin to do something about it.

We cannot fix or change what was lacking in our former years, but we CAN fix it now.

It’s been exposed, and unless you let it, it cannot be used against you again.

But how can I make sure of that?

Well, here’s a list that you can literally live with, also found in Galatians 5;

22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law. 24 And those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires.

I was, and am, so happy to know that there is provision already made for me to live a better life.

Next Wednesday, we’ll talk about how to make this work for us.

Until then, let’s spend a little time considering what needs to be exposed, and dealt with in our hearts, we don’t want to be orphans any more!

Until then …

Friday Favorites – Favorite Bible Story

My favorite story from the bible is pictured here in the photo I took while in Magdala, Israel.

The story is found in Mark:25-29 (ESV)

25 And there was a woman who had had a discharge of blood for twelve years, 26 and who had suffered much under many physicians, and had spent all that she had, and was no better but rather grew worse. 27 She had heard the reports about Jesus and came up behind him in the crowd and touched his garment. 28 For she said, “If I touch even his garments, I will be made well.” 29 And immediately the flow of blood dried up, and she felt in her body that she was healed of her disease.

This poor woman knew in her heart of hearts, that if she could only touch the hem of His garment, she would be healed.

So she threw away her fear, and bravely pushed her way through to Him.

Can you image how hard that had to be for her in her weakened state?

Can you imagine how WE would be,

if we simply pushed our way through, to touch the hem of His garment?

Until next time …