Monday, March 06, 2006

Pure Heart

I still have some questions that I am asking God to reveal the answers and for more clarity on certain subjects. One of those questions brought up by my study in James (the author of the biblical book) concerned my heart condition in the midst of my personal battle (trials and temptations in daily life) and journey with Christ. I have often wondered and questioned the attitude and purity of my own heart. My question centers on how my heart desires, even craves God intimately, but my flesh cries out for the world and all that tempts me.According to Scripture (the source of all truth), the heart can be troubled, wounded, pierced, grieved, even broken at times. Thankfully, it can also be cheerful, glad, merry, joyful, rejoicing.
The heart can be whole or divided – as in that phrase we often use, “Well part of me wants to, but the other part of me doesn’t.” It can be foolish or wise. It can be steadfast, true, upright, stout (I like porters, pale ales, and other ales as well), valiant. (All of these can be found in a search of any biblical concordance concerning the word "heart"). The heart can also be faint, frightened, cowardly, melt like wax. The heart can be wandering, forgetful, dull, stubborn, proud and hardened. Wicked and perverse. I think we all share in these descriptions being made of flesh.
Much to my surprise (and I hope to yours), according to Christ, a heart can also be pure, as in, “Blessed are the pure in heart, for they WILL SEE GOD” (Matt. 5:8). And our hearts can even be noble, as in the parable about the sower that I shared tonight: “But the seed on good soil stands for those with a noble and good heart, who hear the Word, retain it, and by PERSEVERING produce a crop” (Luke 8:15). The Bible (thank the Lord) sees the heart as the source of all creativity, courage, and conviction. It is the source of our faith, our hope, and of course, our love. It is the “wellspring of life” within us (Prov. 4:23), the very essence of our existence, the center of our being, the fount of life.
There is no escaping the centrality of the heart. God knows that; it’s why He made it the central theme of the Bible, just as He placed our physical heart in the center of our human bodies. The heart is central; to find our lives, we MUST (through faith in Christ, trails and battling through temptations with perseverance given from God) make it central again.

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