Nothing going on in your life right now and in the corporate life of this faith community is about what’s going on – it is entirely about our heart. And the revelation of our heart is evidenced in our feelings, attitudes, actions and reactions in relation to what’s going on.
Christianity is first and foremost about the formation of Christ in the heart of the believer.
Concerning this business of the heart, have you stopped to consider how much of what we call secular music is about the heart? Why do you think that is? Could it be that there is something inherent in us – some God created reality that always brings us back to the heart?
Kelly Clarkson sings a song about love that is totally mechanical, robotic, and duty centred; love that is legally correct and as a mere behaviour cannot be faulted – and yet it is love entirely without heart. The title of the song is: ‘Where is Your Heart?’
Long before Kelly Clarkson, in 1953 a very beautiful song hit the world stage. It is the theme song of the movie Moulin Rouge. Please note the lyrics on the slides:
Whenever we kiss I worry and wonder Your lips may be near But where is your heart
It's always like this I worry and wonder You're close to me here But where is your heart
It's a sad thing to realize That you've a heart that never melts When we kiss, do you close your eyes Pretending that I'm someone else
You must break the spell This cloud that I'm under So please won't you tell Darling, where is your heart.
We might conclude that the song is about a paranoid lover. What I hear in it is the very concern and complaint God had with respect to Old Testament Israel.
Isa.29:13 >Then the Lord said, “Because this people draw near with their words and honour Me with their lip service, but they remove their hearts far from Me; And their reverence for Me consists of tradition learned by rote.
What I know this morning is that God’s first concern is not correct behaviour or correct words; he is after our heart. What I further know is that correct behaviour and correct speech do not in themselves mean the heart is correct. What I further (further) know is that God will always see through the behaviour and past the speech and ask one question: Where is your heart?
When God asks – Where is your heart? – God is not trying to locate your heart; He already knows where it is. It is we who need to know where it is because until we do and until we acknowledge where it is we will never be able to move it beyond where it is.
The question then is this: How am I going to discover where my heart is? And that brings us back to the opening statement of this message: Nothing going on in your life right now and in the corporate life of this faith community is about what’s going on – it is entirely about our heart. And the revelation of our heart is evidenced in our feelings, attitudes, actions and reactions in relation to what’s going on.
Returning to Isa.29 here is what we read in verse 14: Therefore behold, I will once again deal marvellously with this people, wondrously marvellous.We look at the phrases – ‘deal marvellously with this people’, and – ‘wondrously marvellous’ and get excited. Wow, God is going to do some wondrously marvellous things to reveal where my heart is. Bring it on, Father God, bring it on.
But then we read the rest of the verse: And the wisdom of their wise men will perish, And the discernment of their discerning men will be concealed.”
Here is how God causes me to discover where my heart is; He takes away or hides from me everything that my heart has been trusting in and relying upon other than God Himself.
Question: What is it my heart is trusting in other than God Himself? Is it wisdom, intellect, money, ministry, position, title, physical strength, relationships, talent and ability? What I know is this – God will begin to slowly pull all those things back and remove them from my sight. It is only in the wake of that discipline that I truly discover where my heart is. And if you wonder why that discovery is so vital just read verse 15:Woe to those who deeply hide their plans from the Lord, And whose deeds are done in a dark place, And they say,“Who sees us?” or “Who knows us?”
Understand that this was not written to the heathen nations round about Israel; it was written to the people of God. God is not asking the world of unbelievers, where is your heart, but He is asking His very own people, where is your heart?
If I find that my heart is in that place of hiding – full of secrets and attitudes that are unlike the heart of Christ – then verse 16 explains what the core issue is.
Shall the potter be considered as equal with the clay, That what is made would say to its maker, “He did not make me”; Or what is formed say to him who formed it, “He has no understanding”?This is a picture of a person who has lost his ability to trust – even God. And notice how that inability to trust is manifested: constantly challenging authority – even God’s.
The question – Where is my heart? – finds its answer in the question – Where is my trust? And my ability to trust is revealed in how I relate to authority.