"The Heart of the Matter, the Matter of the Heart"
God's creation of the human race "in His image" involves many aspects of meaning and significance. The heart of the matter, however, involves the matter of the heart, God's heart. He made us in His image for the possibility and actuality of personal communion with us in love and devotion.
"I have loved thee with an everlasting love" (Jeremiah 31:3).
Relationship and fellowship with God exists as potential in us because He desires to love us and to be loved by us. This involves volitional commitment - "I will" - emotional affection - "I feel" - mental application - "I think" - and physical action - "I do". God's grace in the Lord Jesus Christ received by faith establishes the foundation in us whereby potential becomes actuality as we realize that our Heavenly Father made us to experience the wonder of His sublime character - "God is love" - and then to respond in kind for the pleasure of His heart and our own (I John 4:16).
First and foremost, we must believe that God alone satisfies our hearts. "He is thy life" (Deuteronomy 30:20). No one else can enter or abide in the innermost sanctum of our spiritual being. We succumb to the most devilish temptation of idolatry if we seek to allow anyone else into this Holy of holies reserved for God Himself. This involves our determined response to Truth, namely, we affirm to our Lord and to our own hearts that we will seek life, peace, joy, fulfillment, meaning, and purpose in no other. Every born again believer must build this altar deeply within, and then return to it often for remembrance and reaffirmation of Christ only, Christ always, Christ forever.
We then must realize that we really do possess the capacity to please the heart of God. "The Lord taketh pleasure in His people" (Psalm 149:4). Indeed, any joy we have ever known in a loved one serves as a glimmer of the bright light of the joy our Heavenly Father experiences when we walk with Him in love, faith, devotion, obedience, and expectation of "the hope of glory, which is Christ in you" (Colossians 1:27). We cannot presently look into our Lord's face to see such joy in our relating to Him. But we can look into His Word, wherein the Truth of what we mean to God shines upon every page. Most of all, we look to Calvary, where the Lamb of God paid the highest cost ever remitted in order to provide to us the freest gift ever given. The purpose? That rebel hearts might become hearts of beloved sons and daughters, as "dear children" who bless the heart of our Father (Ephesians 5:1).
The matter of the heart, God's heart, beckons us to realize, remember, and rejoice that this and every moment offers to us the possibility of pleasing the God who so pleases us. The love of Christ in us makes possible a love for God that blessedly redirects our gaze from inward and outward to Upward. We can please Him because we mean so much to Him. Thus, even our determination to love the Lord begins with His love for us. This is the heart of the matter, and the matter of the heart. We need look for no other.
"We beseech you, brethren, and exhort you by the Lord Jesus, that as ye have received of us how ye ought to walk and to please God, so ye would abound more and more."
(I Thessalonians 4:1)
"Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength."
Weekly Memory Verse
We have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellency of the power may be of God, and not of us.
(II Corinthians 4:7