How’s your heart? That’s a question a dear friend usually asks me when he calls. Heart disease is the number one killer with American men and women. Sue discovered female heart attacks are different than men’s. She begins soon cardio-therapy to strengthen her heart. My goal is to swim 3 times a week at the Y. It’s important for us to care of our hearts. But my friend isn’t talking about my physical heart. He’s asking about my spiritual condition.
Unbelievers are characterized by a hard heart – NIV translates it “stubborn heart” (Rom 2:5). We get our English word sclerosis, from the word used here. Hardening of the arteries might take you to an early grave but hardening of your soul will endanger you spiritually. To disobey God’s Word hardens the heart, Ex 4:21; taking God’s physical blessings for granted, Deut 8:6-14; blaming God for suffering, Ps 95:8, rejecting a deserved rebuke, Prov 29:1; refusing to listen, Zech 7:11-13; and failing to respond to God’s Word, Matt 12:11-15 — all contribute to hard hearts. Take heed.
As Christians we need to have sensitive hearts to the things of God. We need to develop receptive and tender hearts. This will not come automatically for there is much in our culture and especially in our own hearts that resist the moving of God’s Spirit to change our hearts. We need to ask God to give us the right kind of heart. O Lord, take our hearts of stone and give to us hearts of flesh. Change our hearts!