For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.– Matt 6:21
The ‘treasure’ here refers to our priorities. If our treasure is Jesus, our priorities will be aligned with the Lord and then our hearts will be united to His. We need to ask ourselves –
What are my priorities in life?
Are they Christ centred?
Do they fit into God’s Will of holiness for my life?
Are they enhancing or restricting my spiritual growth?
Are they allowing me to witness more effectively to the gospel?
The answers bring to the foreground the parts of our life which may need to change or to improve. By consciously looking into the various aspects of our lives and bringing all our failings (in actions, thoughts & attitudes) to the light of Jesus, we allow God to deal with our sinfulness, enabling us to change into more Christ-like people! This brings about an ‘Inner Healing’ which is very much needed in these times. Friction and conflicts in relationships commonly arise among family, friends, with people at the work place and even in church circles. Sometimes, these occur even on a daily basis. Inner healing, in turn, leads to forgiveness, inner joy and peace of mind!
The light shines in the darkness and the darkness did not overcome it.– John 1:5
Create in me a clean heart, O Lord, and renew a right spirit within me.– Ps 51:10
When one consciously desires to let go of sins, proactively deals with weaknesses and imperfections and takes necessary steps to walk with Jesus (Heb 12:1), an interior dependence on God is developed. Through this, we co-operate with the Holy Spirit and allow Him to do what He desires – to transform our hardened hearts from a heart of stone to a heart of flesh!
A new heart I will give you, and a new spirit I will put within you; and I will remove from your body the heart of stone and give you a heart of flesh.– Ezek 36:26
Each and every aspect or ‘piece’ of our heart, whether good, not so good, sinful and even non sinful, need to be surrendered fully to God, including those areas we cannot recall to mind. Though God knows each and every detail of our innermost thoughts (Sir 42:18), He still expects a full surrender from each of His children. This is what actually brings about a loving relationship – that of freedom and trust. Even those parts of our lives which are seemingly good and helpful to others need to be placed in His control. What rules our lives and influences our behaviour are various aspects of past incidents stored in different parts of the memory. When we say Jesus is “Lord”, we need to ask Him to completely rule in our hearts, even to the deepest portion and reign in each & every part of our life – past, present & future. In this way, we can give our heart to Jesus and invite Him in and truly tell Him:
“Jesus, in each and every situation of my life, not my will, but Yours be done. Come into my heart, touch me in every area and take control!”
Our sincerity and co-operation is a must for the shower of His graces and His mercies to be activated in our hearts and for the necessary transformation to take place! Any non-surrendered portion causes a block to the flow of divine grace. Since all of us are human and prone to weakness and temptation, and considering that even a righteous person may fall seven times (Prov 24:16), inviting Jesus into our hearts cannot just be a one-time thing that one needs to do. It may need to be done every single day for a lifetime! In an age where temptations are very strong and the works of satan could easily cause damage and pain, we need to be very watchful. We are all called to guard our hearts and yield to God’s leading. As Christians, It only makes sense to joyfully give our hearts to Jesus!
The peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.– Phil 4:7
Having Jesus in one’s heart is followed by (and at times, is preceded by) what is referred to as the ‘Infilling of the Holy Spirit’, which all disciples are called to experience. With this infilling (which again is not limited to a one-time experience and needs to be ongoing), a disciple – a temple of the Holy Spirit (1Cor 6:19) gets anointed and prepared to live out his / her Christian call and gets empowered from above to be an effective witness to Jesus. Jesus said,
“You will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.”– Acts 1:8
Giving your heart to Jesus yields a wonderful treasure which we cannot really comprehend. It allows for springs of life (Prov 4:23) to flow from your heart! In this way, in a loving relationship with Jesus, we become true children of God (John 1:12). Our actions and behaviour become an overflow of this friendship with Jesus, thereby positively reaching out to others around us. As Jesus said,
Out of the believer’s heart shall flow rivers of living water.– John 7:38
[ from the song “This is my desire”]
Lord, I give you my heart,
I give you my soul;
I live for you alone.
Every breath that I take,
Every moment I’m awake,
Lord, have your way in me!
Published in Charisindia in Sep. 2017