Wednesday, January 26, 2011

When God messes with your heart...

God has been really messing with me lately. As in heart, mind, attitude... Saying stuff I really don't want to hear, much less put into practice. What I want to do is to stick my fingers in my ears and sing 'la la la la' while pretending I don't hear Him. Honestly, I have told Him that I am not at all liking what He's telling me, what He is asking me to do.

For instance my morning devotion began with the verse from Matthew 4, "Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you." Now I don't have any outright enemies but there are a couple of sandpaper people in my life right now that my Molly self wants to march right up to and tell them how I REALLY feel about their behavior. Of course, God immediately brought them to mind when I read that verse this morning.

Really, God? You mean I have to pray for them? I have to love them? Even though they don't seem to be likely to change? I can't pretend they aren't in my life?

I know the correct answer to these questions. I knew before I opened my devotional this morning. But knowing the right answer, the right response doesn't always result in a immediate obedient action. God knew I was struggling in this area and He needed to give me some reminders. As I came to the end of the devotion these statements stabbed me right in the heart.

     "True love is expressed when we have a person's best interest at heart, even when the person has hurt our feelings or treated us with contempt. ...when we wholeheartedly commit to treating others in a way that is in harmony with God's will, we reflect God's love to the world around us."

Isn't that what He asks of His followers? To reflect His love to the world around us. It is easy to read about others who have turned the other cheek, so to speak, and in doing so lived out the reality of Jesus Christ. Stories abound of hardened hearts softened by the loving actions of a Christ follower. But y'all, when the rubber meets the road in this gal's heart and I am faced with the choice to keep showing love to one with a bitter and hardened heart, it is NOT easy.

However, as one who proclaims Jesus to be not just my Savior but also Lord of my life, I have no choice but to obey. Hard as it is, knowing that what I cannot do on my own is possible through Him.

And so today, that is the choice I have made. I am sure God will continue to mess with my heart on this one. Because we both know my stingy little heart. I am so grateful He wants to change it to love like His great big one.

I'm listening, God. Keep messing!


***What is God messing with your heart about? Whatever it is, I encourage you to listen to Him and allow Him free rein in your life. Even though the things He asks us to do are, at times, extremely difficult He is a rewarder of those who are obedient. Trust Him. You won't be disappointed!***

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