Over the next couple of days, I'll be sharing some devotional type of material my wife and I put together some time ago that I hope will be a source of encouragement and perhaps even a challenge to many people. This first one is about how we need to invite the Lord Jesus in to search our hearts, not just in big moments in our lives, but every day, so we can stay on track with regard to where He wants us to be so we can please Him. (Feel free to use this in a Bible study group or for your own personal devotional time.)
Think About It:
The greatest encouragement for the believer in Christ Jesus is to enter into the presence of an all-seeing, all-knowing God who knows us intimately. Because we have been justified by grace though faith in the atoning sacrifice of Christ, and the Holy Spirit dwells in us, we can stand in His light and be examined by His holy presence. We can allow Him to examine our thoughts, attitudes and heart's desires and then "bring into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ" (2 Cor. 10:5). Let’s have a willingness to put away anything which is grievous to God and to His Spirit and be directed by the Word of God in our daily living.
What difference do you see between what you feel when you are hiding something versus when you can openly share things about yourself?
Read Jeremiah 17:10. What does this show you about your relationship with God?
Read Psalm 139:23. David used the word “search” meaning to explore, dig, probe, examine, and investigate. From this Scripture we know that God will show us our hearts, our fears, and our sins.
How might how often we pray and/or the kinds of prayers we pray reveal the state of our spiritual health?
Have you ever been afraid to pray bold prayers? How might your life be different if you begin to pray with increased boldness?
Lord thank You that You are the God of truth. Thank you that Your Word "is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart," according to Hebrews 4:12. We know that nothing is hidden from You, especially not our hearts. Forgive us if we have tried to hide from You in any way. Give us the courage to come to You with humility and honesty with regards to the condition of our hearts. Transform our hearts so they are receptive to what You want to do in us to transform our very lives. Thank You, in Jesus Name, Amen.
Psalm 139:23: Search me, God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. See if there is any offensive way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.
Why is it important to pray this scripture? Because our hearts and lives quickly get cluttered up with dirt, dust and rubbish. It is so easy for us to let wrong things in and to harbor them. It is easy for us to become slack and careless and spiritually insensitive. It is easy to become guilty of wrong attitudes towards others, to become prayerless, to become careless about the desperate need of men and women around us who are without God and without hope for this life and for the life to come. It is easy to become formal in our worship; to become lukewarm in our love for the Lord Jesus. These are the reasons why we should pray David’s prayer, that God will reveal to us our sin and our failure and that He will be unsparing and faithful in doing so.
As God reveals things to you, do the following:
You will benefit from this spiritual heart examination. God will show you your heart, what you fear, where you have fallen short and missed the mark, and how to operate in the power to live victoriously.
I just want to encourage and inspire as many people as I can for Jesus Christ.