David prayed: “Teach me your way, O Lord; I will walk in your truth, UNITE MY HEART TO FEAR YOUR NAME”, Psalm 86:11. Is my heart divided? If I am believing what God says, then my heart is united with His and I stand on His firm foundation, enjoying daily the peace and rest of His presence. Major factors in a Believer’s life that negatively affect a walk with the Lord are fear, unbelief and critical judgement of others, resulting in a divided heart. A kingdom divided against itself cannot stand.
All fear is built on a lie. The Holy Spirit leads me to nail the lie I have taken on board that has divided my heart. His job is to guide me into all truth, not some. Jesus is the Truth. He only ever spoke the words His Father gave Him. When trouble turns up on my doorstep, I have to remind myself: Trouble is not in trouble, but is in my attitude to it.
NEVER SURRENDER THE SENSE OF GOD’S PRESENCE TO A SITUATION.
When I lose my peace in a situation, I need to examine what I am believing and take stock with the Holy Spirit’s guidance. Concern and anxiety are fluffy words for fear. Fear and unbelief are the devil’s territory which open me up to a visit from him. Fear and unbelief are his “children” and the father of all lies, the devil, has visiting rights to his children! Selah. It is my responsibility to believe what God says about my circumstances and trust what His word says. My choice. Paul reminds us that God’s grace is sufficient for me and His strength is made perfect in my weakness, (2 Corinthians 12:9). When I am weak and faltering, I can declare what God says about me. His word is truth. I can take a mustard seed of faith and stand on it. Faith goes into God’s word and is creative in me to strengthen, guide and unite my heart with God’s. On the other hand, fear is creative and goes into the devil’s word to destroy my peace. We are daily exhorted “…Choose you this day whom you will serve…” Joshua 24:15….God or the devil? Let us boldly declare, “…as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord,” and believe what God says. Our daily walk is a walk of faith: learning to let Him lead and putting all trust in Him means releasing the securities I have hung on to and trusted in, other than Himself. He alone is my security and firm foundation.
Criticism of others, judgement, is the other factor that gives me a divided heart. Jesus’ command was simple, Matthew 7:1-5 “Judge not, that ye be not judged. For with what judgement you judge, you shall be judged, and with what measure you mete, it shall be measured to you again.”
Paul teaches, Romans 2:1 “Therefore you are inexcusable, O man, whosoever you are that judges, for wherein you judge another, you condemn yourself, for you that judge, do the same things.” You may argue that you definitely do not do the things you judge others of. Beware! You are elevating yourself above the word of God and fail to recognise that it is God’s hand of mercy and grace that keeps you from the failings you judge others of. “There but for the grace of God go I….” If I do not believe this, then I will prove it! Jeremiah 17:9-10 describes the state of the heart of man not ruled by Christ: “The heart is deceitful above all things and desperately wicked, who can know it? I the Lord search the heart….to give every man according to his ways, and according to the fruit of his doings.” This is why we need a Saviour, our Lord Jesus Christ, to rule our hearts.
The Pharisees knew the word of God and religiously demonstrated an adherence to the law, but Jesus saw the motives of their hearts, wanting to look good to others and yet inwardly hypocritical and selfish. They elevated themselves above others, not aware that their pride and judgement of their fellow men was an abomination in God’s eyes. God does not look on the outward appearance as men do, He looks at the heart. Judgement of my fellow men divides my heart from God’s. I cannot help but observe others’ lives, but I do not have to criticise them. I can pray for them instead of judging and despising them. The Lord may even require me to share some of the abundant grace and mercy He has bestowed upon me, with them. When my heart is united with God’s heart, I will not despise and judge others and then He can give me spiritual discernment, devoid of judgement, to His glory and to be used for His purposes.
P. Doddridge, the hymn writer, had received the revelation of a united heart with God’s and penned the hymn, “O happy day that fixed my choice”. Verse 3 reads:
Now rest, my long divided heart,
Fixed on this blissful centre, rest,
Nor ever from thy Lord depart,
With Him of every good possessed.
What a man believes, rules him. Proverbs 23:7, “As a man thinks in his heart, so is he.” It is time to live my life according to what God says about me and exchange some of the lies I have been believing. “I am accepted in the Beloved.” Christ is my identity. I am a new creation in Him. The Indwelling Christ in me seeks to be released to the world, and His standard is recorded in 1 Corinthians 13. This love, the love of God, is long suffering, is kind, does not envy, does not vaunt itself to others, is not proud, does not behave unseemly, seeks the wealth of another before self, is not easily provoked, thinks no evil, rejoices in the truth, not iniquity, bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things and…..this love of Christ in me NEVER FAILS!
A united heart with God will demonstrate Micah 6:8 “…What does the Lord require of you? To do justly, love mercy and to walk humbly with your God.”