Jeremiah said it best: our hearts are wicked, who can know them? (17:9)
We like to say someone has a good heart, a kind heart, a receptive heart. And I’m sure they do, relatively speaking. But there are deeper layers that the bravest of us try to avoid. Jealousy. Hatred. Racism. Arrogance. Self-obsession.
Icky, ugly stuff.
Often we’re not even aware of it. It’s easier that way.
Yet still not the way God created us to be.
But God has an amazing, compassionate way to deal with our struggling heart. He walks us through difficult circumstances and calls us to do things that are uncomfortable – to surrender to His will, to follow His commands, to love our enemies, to cross boundaries to care for those unlike us, to serve when it hurts, to forgive.
When He does, we might try to turn a deaf ear to that still, small voice. Sometimes He lets us ignore Him. When He does, it’s easier for us, but we’re the poorer for it. Other times, however, He won’t stay quiet. He keeps prodding, keeps knocking, keeps calling, keeps intruding on our passive rebellion. When He does, it’s more challenging, but we’re the richer for it.
The most famous rebel against God’s call is the prophet Jonah – yep, the whale guy. But Jonah’s story is about much more than the great fish. Jonah’s story is about a compassionate sovereign God calling His people to have a heart like His, a heart that cares about others. Jonah’s self-obsession wasn’t having it. But God wouldn’t stay quiet.
God in His miraculous, sovereign way sought to align Jonah’s heart to His. Aligning our desires with God’s is a continual process. It takes the surrender of our will and the willingness to embrace the mercy and might of Almighty God. Where are you with the alignment of your heart with God’s? We all can be a bit like Jonah. What about you?
Over the next four weeks we will be walking through this amazing little book and discover this process of aligning our hearts to God’s. Our hope and prayer is that you would listen to God and respond to His call.
Perhaps it’s to show God’s love to those who are different than we are – that was Jonah’s calling. Or maybe it’s loving that guy across the street just like us, but who doesn’t know Jesus. Maybe it’s enduring a difficult marriage or parenting a challenging child. Maybe it’s using the pain you’ve endured and the lessons you’ve learned to serve others.
We don’t know exactly what alignment to God is for you, but we do know He’s calling, and if say “yes” to Him, you’ll be the richer for it!