Tuesday, January 11, 2011

The (Re)solution for a Wandering Heart

Well, now that we’re nearly two weeks into the New Year I’m curious to know how your resolutions are coming along. Perhaps, if you’re like me your only resolution is to stop resolving altogether, but I suppose an approach like that ultimately requires an additional resolution to stop making illogical promises to yourself. Maybe I should just simply resolve to blog more frequently.

The fact is that we are all seeking to add meaning or value to our lives no matter what date happens to be approaching on the calendar. We may occasionally take stock of our lives, and based upon what we see, decide to eat healthier, save more for our kid’s education, or get to the gym more often. Whether we are disciplined enough to meet our individual goals doesn’t mean that the pursuit ever stops even if your new elliptical machine slowly morphs into an extra place to hang your clothes.

Time is the great equalizer, and with its passage we receive a clear understanding of where our dearest and truest commitments lie. What is it that gets us out of bed in the morning or compels us to stay up late into the night? What drives us to scrape in order to save every penny or borrow to spend into oblivion? What person, object, or lifestyle, captivates our imagination and becomes the perceived ideal for our personal peace and satisfaction? Make no doubt about it, our hearts are continually resolved to run swiftly towards significance, even if our heads may not consciously perceive it.

Though God has placed eternity in the human heart (Ecclesiastes 3:11) we are often prone to spend our lives in hopeless quests that offer no eternal return on investment (Isaiah 53:6). I am haunted by the first verses of II Timothy 3 which say that in the last days people will own a form of godliness but suffer from a faith that ultimately lacks power because it chooses selfishness and pleasure over the Lordship of Christ.

In the light of scripture, Jesus asks each one of us as he repeatedly asked Peter in John 21, “Do you love me?”

God’s grace alone saves us (Ephesians 2:8) and continues to welcome our wandering hearts back to Him, but what do we give in return? My prayer is that it is nothing less than a total surrender of our will in submission to the only One who can provide for our otherwise insatiable hunger and thirst.

In that surrender, I would challenge each of us to look beyond the worlds we’ve constructed to carry the light of God’s love into the places where its rays are scarcely shining. Today in Mbulu, Tanzania there are young mothers-to-be who have not heard the name of Jesus, and there are little ones who may not see another year of life on this earth, unless someone obeys the Lord’s call to act on their behalf.

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