Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Vines and Branches - V(a)

Probably, the most important consideration for living in relationship, rather than living in religion, is open-hearted communication.

I think there are several characteristics of open-hearted communication. First, it is open-hearted. In other words, there is nothing closed off, nothing hidden. There is no subject that is out of bounds ... for conversation. Obviously, since God is holy and righteous, there are things that are out of bounds for practice. It is one thing to say, "Man! That guy makes me so angry, I want to kill him!" It is another to actually kill him. The Bible does say that if something is real in the heart, it is just as real as if it was in the world. It is sin if we do something. It is sin if we contemplate it.

We have said this many times: we live from our hearts outward. Anything we say or do begins in our hearts. And as someone who has given his allegiance to Jesus, we want to live in obedience. So, when we do evil, we tend to hide it, or to "behavior modify" it. But it is the condition of the heart that produces action. No one is stronger than their heart. But God can flood our hearts with his love, transform our motivations, rewire our DNA and make us new.

It is the openness that allows God to work on these areas. God has given us freedom. He does not coerce our transformation. He invites us to cooperate. It is in our openness that he has a pathway into our hearts.

Openness is not just for transforming the evil in us. It enhances the good. It opens a pathway for revelation. We show our hearts, our thoughts and our natures to God. He reveals his heart. He reveals his thoughts. He reveals his nature. And, maybe, he reveals his marching order. 

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