Reflection and Fast
Today is Good Friday, the beginning of our Easter weekend and the culmination of Lent. This has been a time of reflection and fast for many. This time of year causes me to just pause and evaluate my life and relationship with Christ. I choose to give up a little something to only slightly feel the impact of what Christ had to sacrifice for me. His sacrifice is one that I alone can never match, but my walk here can be for him! In the words of Paul found in 1 Corinthians 11:1, “Be imitators of me, as I am of Christ.”
Celebrate the Life of Jesus
My words will not be the words that should be typed or read this weekend. Stop and read the resurrection story and celebrate the sacrifice and love Christ had for us all! This story can be found:
Each is story is powerful and shares how much Christ loves each one of us.
Easter is like a New Year. I feel a sense of renewal. A reminder of my walk and relationship and an opportunity to make it stronger. Let the gospel work. I pray you stop and read. Stop and Listen
Closing Verse: Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. Whoever believes in me, though he die, yet shall he live, and everyone who lives and believes in me shall never die. Do you believe this?” John 11: 25-26
Challenge: Find time to reflect on Christ’s Crucifixion and Resurrection.
During this past week I have meditated and read the scriptures on the heart constantly praying for more guidance by the Lord both from scripture and a renewal in my heart. Fully understanding what must take place in my heart means I must fully understand my heart and how it works in this world where the devil lives and works. As I look back at Jeremiah 17:9 the verse that really began this walk for me, I decide to look it up in several versions. One I like is the ESV it reads, “The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately sick; who can understand it?” Reading this verse again I really start to realize not just how I need to be focused on my heart but how hard it is to understand others especially when the heart is full of such wickedness that no one can understand it maybe not ever the person whose heart is consumed with wickedness. That is a scary thought. Not just for those I love but as well for me. Romans 1:21 in some ways expresses this even among believers “For although they knew God, they did not honor him as God or give thanks to him, but they became futile in their thinking, and their foolish hearts were darkened.” The frightening impact of that verse is that even those that know God may not choose to honor God because of their heart. I pray that will not be my heart. Lord I ask that you lead me to a new heart, and one that loves and prays for the hearts of those who are lost. It is sad that man had to find this wicked path, but on a day like Easter Sunday as I study the heart, I realize the impact that God has had with the gift of Christ to save us from our sins. I can feel hope in his resurrection that my heart can be resurrected from the wickedness that it bears. From the fall man has had wickedness in his heart. Genesis 6:5 reads, ” The Lord saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every intention of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually.” These words bring tears to my eyes to know that God has endured so much pain by man that he loves so much, and that love provided a sacrifice in Christ that would save us all from our wicked hearts. Acts 7:51 reads “You stiff-necked people, uncircumcised in hearts and ears, you always resist the Holy Spirit. As your fathers did, so do you.” The evil in man has been for so long sometimes I think it is even hard for us to see it. People who have uncircumcised hearts have hearts that are not purified and heathen. An uncircumcised heart leads to a hard heart which leads to no relationship with the Lord. Ephesians 4:18 says, “They are darkened in their understanding, alienated from the life of God because of the ignorance that is in them, due to their hardness of heart.” May God give the wisdom not to be ignorant so my heart my live and rejoice in the Lord. Ignorance that has a heart like the one in 2 Peter 2:14 “They have eyes full of adultery, insatiable for sin. They entice unsteady souls. They have hearts trained in greed. Accursed children!” These verses take me back to Proverbs 16:5 and the pride God hates in our hearts. Searching I found Jeremiah 49:16 which speaks of more pride and how the Lord will still hunts us “The horror you inspire has deceived you, and the pride of your heart, you who live in the clefts of the rock, who hold the height of the hill. Though you make your nest as high as the eagle’s, I will bring you down from there, declares the Lord.” Even full of pride the Lord can bring us to our knees. Yes that is what he has done to me. I refuse to have a hard heart one that is spoken of in Romans 2:5 “But because of your heard and impenitent heart you are storing up wrath for yourself on the day of wrath when God’s righteous judgement will be revealed.” I want the heart of Matthew 6: 21 that is full of treasures in heaven – “For where you treasure is, there your heart will be also.” On this Easter Sunday may my heart and my treasure be full of the resurrection of my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ who is spoken of in 1 Peter 2:24, “He himself bore our sins in his body on the tree, that we might die to sin and live to righteousness. By his wounds you have been healed! Praise God – He is Risen!
I have the same prayer for you and your heart!