What's in your Heart Today?

Most have seen the popular television commercials for a credit card company that has the tag line, "What's in your wallet today?" More importantly than your wallet, is your HEART. What's in your heart today?

Our world continues to experience radical changes in the health field (COVID), cultural, political, and economic arenas that are impacting our society. Fear can be seen and heard on every newscast. Political correctness that defies all rational thought is fueling much of our anxiety. The prophetical roadmap of the last days can be clearly seen. Isaiah 5:20 says "Woe to those who call evil good and good evil, who put darkness for light and light for darkness, who put bitter for sweet." In the midst of all that is transpiring, it seems that many are losing heart. We ask ourselves, what's in our heart today? We need to continually guard our hearts and prepare for the days before us, by choosing to go forward in faith, not fear.

I remember the story of a couple whose son was away at college. They had high expectations, but the son's grades were so low that he failed. Realizing his parents' disappointments, the son sent an email to his mother. "Dear Mom, flunked all my courses - kicked out of school. Prepare Dad." His mother replied, "Dad prepared, prepare yourself."

In John 16 we find Jesus preparing his disciples for his departure. He said in verse 33, "I have told you all this so that you may have peace IN ME. Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows. but take HEART, because I have OVERCOME the world."

The amplified Bible says, "I have told you these things, so that in Me you may have [perfect] peace and confidence. In the world you have tribulation and trials and distress and frustration; but be of good cheer [take COURAGE; be confident, certain, undaunted]! For I have OVERCOME the world. [I have deprived it of power to harm you and have conquered it for you.]" AMP

Our source of peace is in HIM, not in people, places or things. He also said, "in the world you will have tribulation, trials, distress and frustration." I believe most people get it, don't you? Then Jesus said, "take HEART"; the KJV says be of good cheer, but the original language means - be of good courage, for I have overcome the world.

Have we lost heart instead of taking heart? Are we facing the future with courage or fear? What's in our heart today?

Have We Lost Heart Instead of Taking Heart?

May I encourage you to keep your focus on the Lord and to be of good courage? Have the courage to live out your faith. WHY is that important? Without courage we end up living in fear and anxiety. Without courage we lose our purpose. Without courage we're no longer salt and light.

In the midst of challenges, some Christians have retreated while others have become so rapture conscious that neither are impacting those in their circles of influence. Jesus told us in Luke 19:13 to "occupy." It means do business until he comes. Are we continuing to live out the gospel? Are we continuing to evangelize and make disciples? Are we continuing to contend for the faith; to fight the good fight of faith? It requires heart-filled courage.

HOW do we change what's in our heart in order for us to go forward in faith and not fear? May I offer three principles? First - REPENT (change of thinking) of allowing the destructive fears to enter our heart and ask the Holy Spirit to help us assimilate the truth of His word into our hearts.

Second - PRAY and saturate our heart with the truth of God's Word. I recently read something that captured my attention. "Worry is a conversation you have with yourself about things you cannot change. Prayer is a conversation you have with God about things He can change." Wow, is that ever true! Prayer, and specifically praying the promises of God, will provide courage/faith for our heart which can change us and how we see the future. Meditate and declare God's Promises (Joshua 1:8) over ourselves and family.

Worry is a Conversation You Have with yourself about things you cannot change. Prayer is a conversation you have with God about things He can change.

Third - CULTIVATE or practice the PRESENCE of God. He's the great I AM. He's our HOPE (Jehovah Shammah - the God who is always there). He said He would never leave or forsake us (Matt 28:20). The Holy Spirit is God who is everywhere. He is called our Helper. Talk to Him throughout the day. Treat Him like He's your best friend... He is! Remember in vs 33 Jesus said, "I have told you these things, so that IN ME you may have [perfect] peace and confidence." (AMP)

I read the story of man who was preparing to have open heart surgery many years ago. It looked like he might not make it, so there was great anxiety. The day before the surgery, he was in his room at the hospital. A nurse from surgery came to pay him a visit in preparation for the surgery. She asked him to hold her hand. She said in effect to him. Now tomorrow you will be disconnected from your heart and kept alive only by the virtue of certain machines. When the surgery is complete and they've completed their work on your heart, the machines will stop and all the vessels of your heart will be restored. You will be placed back in a special recovery room. You will be immobile for as long as 6 hours. You may not be able to speak, or even open your eyes, but you will be conscious and will hear everything going on around you. During those hours, I will be at your side and will hold your hand just like I'm doing now. I will stay with you until you are fully recovered: your eyes open and you will be able to speak. Although you may feel absolutely helpless, when you feel my hand, you will know that I will not leave you. Jesus said the Holy Spirit would come after He left. He would be our helper, our counselor and our comforter.

God Doesn't Always Remove Our Challenges... He Often Helps Us OVERCOME Them.

What's in your heart today? May I encourage you to take inventory? If fear has replaced faith; if fear has dominated faith; if the world has replaced Jesus Christ ruling in your heart - do something about it. It begins with repentance and prayer, and progresses with praying and declaring TRUTH - His promises over us and our families.

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