February 22, 2012

How's Your Heart?



And when Jesus heard it, he said to them, "Those who are well have no need of a physician, but those who are sick..." -Mark 2:17
The best way to deal with sin is not to attempt to reform, but to adore the Savior. Winning over our lower nature is made possible by adoration... Rules, instead of limiting our sin, define sin, rivet our attention to it, lead us to desire it. Worship avoids all interest in sin, pointing our hearts and minds in a totally different direction. -Calvin Miller 
I've said it before, and I'll keep saying it: God isn't in the business of behavior management, but heart transformation. It drives me crazy when I see others trying to white-knuckle their way to either A) Follow God's commands laid out in scripture, B) Impress other Christians and the church, C) Meet expectations and rules that you and others have of yourself, or D) All of the above. When we white-knuckle and fight our way to keep the rules, commands, or expectations we're not really resolving the underlying problems that are found in our hearts. If anything we do more harm than good, and God is not glorified with such actions either. Our God asks us to come before Him with our hearts broken and contrite (Psalm 51:17). These He will not despise. We serve a God who asks for heartfelt worship of Him in everything. And that's the key: worship. Sin is worshiping created things rather than the Creator. All sin is a result of misplaced worship.

So that pornography addiction you have just points to an idol of lust in your heart. Or that sharp tongue that you can't control points to a idol of anger and wrath tied to selfishness. The list goes on and on, but it all shows us that we're worshiping an idol instead of the Living God. And when we choose to worship anything and anybody other than God, we're sure to become disappointed, despondent, and eventually depressed. It all becomes one vicious cycle that needs to be broken. But we can't do it ourselves. The answer certainly doesn't lie in trying harder, because we will continue to fail on our own.

Uprooting idols is a hard, ugly, painful business that has to be done through the healing grace, strength, and power of God, but it begins with repentance:
Repentance is the step-by-step walking out of our redemption, the bit-by-bit turning of our hearts from the corruption of idolatry to the sweetness and rest in treasuring God above all. -Mike Wilkerson in Redemption
Treasuring God is done through our worship. We have to make our passion and worship for Christ bigger and stronger than our passion and worship of other idols. "Passion beats passion." If you're stumbling today, turn from the sin, and adore the Savior. Make an appointment with the Sovereign Physician get a real pulse on where you're heart is at. Don't bother wasting your time beating yourself up and thinking of more ways that you can be better or clean yourself up. Christ already was better for you and was completely clean for you. Find rest and healing in the grace and worship.

**I highly recommend reading this post when you have a couple of minutes
**I highly recommend Mike Wilkerson's book Redemption: Freed By Jesus from the Idols We Worship and the Wounds We Carry and Dallas Willard's book Renovation of The Heart. These are two books everyone should have on their shelves.

4 comments :

  1. you are so right. i have learned (sometimes the hard way) that you have to let God take care of everything because when we try to force it ourselves, we only screw things up.

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