A True Heart
Does it ever appear that regardless of how much you want to DRAW NEAR to God, it just doesn’t seem to be happening? You know you need to; you want to, God invites you to (“Draw near to God and He will draw near to you” Jas. 4:8. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you” Jas. 4:7.), but it doesn’t seem to work, and the sin and weaknesses you want to be free of just seem to continue no matter how hard you want to be rid of them? I hope that is not the case, but for those who might need some help in this area, I wanted to share some thoughts.
Consider the acceptable approach to God in the light of this verse. “...let us draw near [to God] with a TRUE HEART in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience and our bodies washed with pure water” (Heb. 10:22 NKJV).
Notice that the prerequisite for drawing near to God is having a TRUE heart—before the other things that follow. What does that mean?
Notice the first three references to the heart in scripture.
1) “The Lord saw how great man’s wickedness on the earth had become, and that every inclination of the THOUGHTS OF HIS HEART was only evil all the time” (Gen. 6:5).
When we are speaking about the heart in scripture, there is a part of the intellect that is involved: the THOUGHTS of his heart.
2) “The Lord was GRIEVED that he had made man on the earth, and his heart was FILLED WITH PAIN” (Gen. 6:6).
The heart in scripture not only involves the intellect but also the emotions, for grief and the ability to feel pain are emotions.
3) “And the Lord smelled a soothing aroma. Then the Lord said in His heart, “I WILL never again curse the ground for man’s sake, although the imagination of man’s heart is evil from his youth; nor will I again destroy every living thing as I have done” (Gen. 8:21).
God said in His heart, I WILL NOT...
So these three things make up the heart: the intellect, the emotions and the will. It is said to be the organ of personality.
It makes sense that for the heart to be a TRUE one (other translations say SINCERE heart), the intellect, emotions and the will must be absolutely surrendered to Him.
I know most of us already know this, but If you seem to have trouble breaking through, so to speak, drawing near to God where there is rest, peace, forgiveness, strength, hope, etc., make sure that all these areas are truly surrendered to Him. Be willing to look at these areas again in your life that you took for granted were areas you had already mastered. Are your thoughts really CONSECRATED? Do you force the energy of your emotions (no matter how badly you feel) toward the WORSHIP and ADORATION of a Holy God? And is your will truly becoming NOTICEABLY inseparable from His in all things? If these areas are coming under the control of the Holy Spirit, I see no reason why your DESIRE to draw near to God would not become a reality very soon with good fruit to show for it.
Thanks for wading through all that with me.
For His sake,