I once made an attempt to remind my little corner of the world what unity looked like because it seemed we had forgotten. I wrote a post called Good + Right when the political climate was heated. It wasn’t a political post, it was mostly about the heart of God. And here I am finding myself writing another post, a few years later, this time about the human heart.
I’m on a lifelong journey to wholeness. We all are. I won’t have complete wholeness until I get to the other side, but it’s a journey I hope to always be on. Sometimes, I lose my way. It’s easy to do. It’s easy to let fear and pride, anger and shame or any other natural human thing get in the way of truth and humility, unity and freedom.
Since birth, the human heart is sought after by our creator AND by the enemy of our soul. It is a daily choice to listen to the spirit of truth or to the lies of the enemy. So how do we not let the truth get buried, especially in this day and age? We are bombarded with so much info and so many voices saying this is it, this is the way!
In John 14:6, Jesus tells the disciples, “I am the way, the truth and the life. No one can come to the Father except through me,” but let’s back up just a bit to verse one. Jesus says, “Don’t let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God and also trust in me. There is more than enough room in my Father’s home. If this was not so, would I have told you that I am going to prepare a place for you? When everything is ready, I will come and get you, so that you will always be with me where I am. And you know the way to where I am going.”
Thomas replied, “No, we don’t Lord. We have no idea where you are going, so how can we know the way?” I love how Thomas asks for clarification right away. Some bible scholars refer to him as doubting Thomas, perhaps because of his response to seeing Jesus alive, as recorded in John chapter 20, after Thomas witnessed his death two days earlier. Thomas wanted to be certain it was him, the Messiah.
Thomas seems like the type who needs to know the truth for his own peace of mind. He wanted to know the way, but also where Jesus was going. I think many of us desire peace in the midst of the unknown. This has been my heart’s cry and prayer for a long time-for God’s guidance, wisdom and discernment. So much so, I wrote a poem about it.
But even though I wrote a poem about it, I still lose my way. It’s part of being human. Accepting Jesus as my Savior does not automatically give me godly understanding. Jesus was hard to understand sometimes. Let me rephrase that: Jesus was hard to understand most times. But Jesus is the way.
Jesus is not just about the destination, but the journey.
When we look too far ahead or focus solely on the destination, it’s easy to lose our way. When it comes to gaining godly wisdom in our world, or using discernment, it doesn’t start with watching the news and trying to make sense of what’s going on in the world. It starts with examining our own human heart.
In Psalm 26:2, David says, “Put me on trial Lord, and cross-examine me. Test my motives and my heart.” David knew full well that his own heart could lead him astray, and it did, but God still called him a man after God’s own heart. Many of us confuse that with believing David had the heart of God, but that is the misstep. David had a human heart in need of being tested.
The Apostle Paul warned Christians to do the same. In 2 Corinthians 13:5 he says, “Examine yourselves to see if your faith is genuine. Test yourselves.” He was well aware of our ability to lose our way even after putting our faith in Jesus. In this passage, he was speaking to Christians!
It’s easy to veer away from godly discernment and wisdom because we’ve already “done the research” or formed our “own opinion,” but neither of these things leave room for God to guide. He works in mysterious ways and when we think we already know, we are not looking to God, we are actually choosing to be led by our own human pride.
I confess I’ve lost my way in recent months, giving myself over to politics and conspiracy theories and missing out on the peace of Jesus. I had to do what David did and ask God to cross-examine my heart. And I had to repent. I still need to keep turning my heart toward my creator.
Every. Single. Day.
Jesus knew how easily our hearts would get caught up in the way of the world and so he left us with a gift, a gift the world cannot give: peace of mind and heart. Lean into that gift today. Ask him to examine your heart, to take away any fear and pride and lead you in the way everlasting.
I am leaving you with a gift–peace of mind and heart. And the peace I give is a gift the world cannot give. So don’t be troubled or afraid.John 14:27