The one-foot journey is from head to heart. We all work from our head, calling our current thought-life trustworthy. But we know this isn't true.
Is there a place within us that we can trust? Yes! God is shouting from the rooftops that there is a place in the core of our being that we can trust.. but we have been led to believe that our hearts are not to be trusted. The common belief regarding salvation is that we have forgiveness of our sins (the past) and a place to go to (the future). However, it's not just our sins that our forgiven, but our self being changed.
Can we really trust our hearts? It's easy for us to pull out an Old Testament verse, take it out of context, and lead a multitude to believe that we have wicked hearts. However, we should see the New Testament where it says we are born of God, born of the Spirit, born again, made new creations!
For the Word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of the soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart. - Hebrews 4:12
If you want to understand your heart, don't go to your feelings or your past experiences, go to the Word. God has the answers for us in His Word. Before we understand our own hearts, we ought to understand the unbeliever's heart.
Therefore God gave them over in the lusts of their hearts to impurity.. Romans 1:24
But because of your stubbornness and unrepentant heart you are storing up wrath for yourself in the day of wrath and revelation of the righteous judgment of God. Romans 2:5 (Note: Who experiences wrath? It is the unbeliever. Let us not take verses for other people for ourselves!)
The Unbeliever's heart is unrepentant and lustful.. but what about your heart? We say that we have a problem within us.. can we trust our hearts? Are we truly practicing humility by saying we have wicked hearts, or is there greater humility in understanding the actual truth of your heart?
Our hearts? God has 'crossed' our hearts. God took us and our hearts and nailed us to the cross, and we died with Jesus. We died spiritually.. and now we have been given new hearts, in conformity with the OT prophecies..
I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit in you; I will remove from you your heart of stone and give you a heart of flesh. And I will put my Spirit in you and move you to follow my decrees and be careful to keep my laws. - Ezekiel 36:26-27
See that we get a new heart, and we also get a new spirit. Don't believe that you only received the spirit without a new heart - it wouldn't make sense! No, we have been given new hearts, and a new spirit with it! See, when we came into this world we were dead to God and alive in sin.. but then God took our hearts, took us and crucified us, then made new creations with new hearts and new spirits. Now, we are alive to God and dead to sin!
We are not in process; God does not dwell in dirty places, so he tears us down and builds us up anew, making us literal Temples of the Holy Spirit, right here, right now! So yes, we have forgiveness of our sins, a place to go to, and to address the present, we have been made new creations, living, breathing temples where God dwells!
So, even in light of this, it is fair to ask, why do we still sin? The thing is, you can say that we have been made new temples for God, yet we would still have the tendencies to operate out of what we were used to doing - religious rites, old habits, sinful addictions are still in our minds.. But we should also remember that God took out all these systems ('software', if you like), and gave us a totally new operating system! We would do well to update, instead of refusing, or to click on 'Remind Me Later'..
The flesh is out-of-date, unrenewed software.. but we ought to know that we have new hardware ('heartware', if you like).
This is the covenant I will establish with the people of Israel after that time, declares the Lord. I will put my laws in their minds and write them on their hearts. I will be their god, and they will be my people. - Hebrews 8:10
God has taken His desires and placed them where? IN YOUR HEART. We do NOT have wicked hearts. Christ paid a great price for us to have brand new hearts!
What else can be said about the Believer's heart?
But he is a Jew who is one inwardly; and the circumcision is that which is of the heart, by the Spirit, not by the letter; and his praise is not from men, but from God. - Romans 2:29
There is a circumcision of the heart - there is a cutting away of the old heart and an implantation of a new heart.
But thanks be to God that though you were slaves of sin, you became obedient from the heart to that form of teaching to which you were committed. - Romans 6:17
We used to be slaves of sin, but now we have become obedient FROM THE HEART. Let's not fall into the trap of separating grace and obedience. Here we see by grace, we have been given obedient hearts. Grace and obedience come hand in hand - we shouldn't live contrary to our hearts, and God knows the damage this does, so He goes straight to giving us new hearts!
It's really important that we know this because we couldn't put on love and compassion, and we couldn't put on Jesus until we realize that all of us, including our hearts, has been made new through Christ.
Do we know who we are? Christian, you don't really want to sin. The impulses, the thoughts, the flesh and the enemy may be tugging at us, but Christian, you who have been born of God, born of the Spirit, do you find yourself loving the sin you commit, or do you find yourself thinking that it was something you didn't want to do? If Christ has indeed infused you with His life, then you would naturally go for the latter.
And hope does not put us to shame, because God's love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us. - Romans 5:5
Again, God has cleaned house! He cleaned house and poured out His spirit in us... Our hearts are pleasant to the Lord. Our lives are a pleasant aroma to God, totally contrary to what we are forced by this world to believe, that our God is disgusted at us and has His work cut out in really making us pure and blameless before Him! God prepared a place to dwell in - He cleaned house, took away the old heart, and all things have indeed become new! We ought to make our software compatible with the new hardware!
So that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love.. - Ephesians 3:17
We have a new heart, and a new spirit..
Because you are His sons, God sent the Spirit of His Son into our hearts, the Spirit who calls out, 'Abba, Father.' - Galatians 4:6
Our spirits have been changed as much as our hearts, to the point that we have been made a child of God by nature. Thank You, Jesus!
We've oftentimes been talking about knowing it in our heads, and that we should believe it in our hearts... but (news flash) this is false! It's actually the other way around. Our hearts are new, and we are transformed by the renewing of our minds - we aren't know-it-alls, but we do have 'it' all in our hearts - we are not found wanting, we are lacking nothing in our hearts!
But.. what about your 'self'? We keep saying we cannot trust ourselves, and that we should trust in God... but what we're really saying if we really believe this is that God and you are not on the same side, and this cannot be further from the Truth! God is on our side, and as He is for us, who can be against us? We have been united with Christ, and nothing can ever separate us - how preposterous it is now for us to think that we have some sort of enmity with God, even after we have been made new creations, holy and acceptable to him.
Galatians 2:20 states, once again, that the old self has been crucified with Christ, and now we have a self that lives in faith in Him who loves us and gave His life for us. We only have one self, and this self has been made new! The source of temptation is not from within, it's not from the new heart or the new self, but from outward sin, and from outward flesh!
It's so ironic that we look as Christ as separate from us, and are focused on a lie that sin lies within.. when the Truth states the exact opposite! Christ is within, and sin is separate from us! These sources of temptation, therefore, are away from us and definitely not of us.
If we understand how clean we have been made, if we understand how spotless Christ has made us, if we understand how we are new and clean, we can look at a piece of garbage, a sinful thought, a temptation, and understand that it doesn't belong with us, that it doesn't fit with who we are! Your view of who you are matters!
We therefore are able to put on Christ, because we know that Christ lives within. We are generous, we are bold and courageous, when we understand that these are compatible with what we are, and we are new creations in Christ, with new hearts and new spirits! Gentleness and kindness are a fit to our new hearts!
A new heart and a new self mean new possibilities... We are in Christ. We were crucified in Christ, buried in Christ, and we have been raised with Christ, seated in the heavenly places with Christ, right here, and right now! Check out the possibilities:
Each one must do just as he has purposed in his heart, not grudgingly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver. - 2 Corinthians 9:7
People have us focused on being cheerful when we understand that generosity and cheerfulness are perfect fits with the new heart that we have. And what else does this tell about our hearts if we are to do as we have purposed in our hearts?
But the goal of our instruction is love from a pure heart and a good conscience and a sincere faith. - 2 Timothy 2:22
Let's trust our hearts, which have pure purposes!
The goal of this command is love, which comes from a pure heart and a good conscience and a sincere faith. Flee the evil desires of youth and pursue righteousness, faith, love and peace, along with those who call on the Lord out of a pure heart.. But let your adorning be the hidden person of the heart with the imperishable beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which in God's sight is very precious. - 1 Timothy 1:5
But let it be the hidden person of the heart, with the imperishable quality of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is precious in the sight of God. - 1 Peter 3:4
Your heart, and your spirit are precious in God's sight. God 'crossed' your heart. He cleaned house and moved in, and now your heart is an obedient heart.
Let us respect the finished work of Christ by trusting our new self, which is united with Christ, one spirit with Him. You really can trust yourself, and you really can live from your heart, instead of your mind!
Take the one-foot journey from the mind to your spiritual core. Your mind is constantly being renewed, but your heart is already made new! Take the one-foot journey to a better marriage, a better leadership, to better communication... in the midst of all that we go through, we can operate from the head, but we can communicate from the heart, being slow to speak and quick to listen, in contrast to the mind which does the exact opposite!
Disunity and disruption are birthed when we try to live from our minds instead of our hearts... We must understand that we can trust our hearts more than our minds. Our hearts are a safe place where Christ dwells. He cleaned house and operates now from our hearts. We can deviate from the way our minds believe we have always been doing things, and we can listen to the hearts we have been given, and from there we can compromise, understand, communicate, and walk in His ways.
We can live from our new hearts, where Christ lives. He gave us a new heart, a new spirit, and a new life. We died with Jesus, our hearts were crossed, but we praise God because we have been made dead to sin and alive to Christ! Halleluyah!
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May the Lord bless you and keep you. May the Lord make His face shine on you and be gracious to you. May the Lord lift His countenance upon you and give you His Shalom. - Numbers 6:24-26