Molding a lump of clay

Molding a lump of clay
I am a work in progress, molded by my Maker, refined by His fire, shaped with His love. Walk the journey with me.

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Aching, breaking, remaking my heart

I have a heart condition... I struggle to love.

Achk!! And she's a missionary?!

It's heart is deceitful above all else. Wicked. Nothing good in it. (Jer 17:9)

I used to think I was loving, but I've known my love is conditional. If I'm honest, I have to admit that my love is fickle, springing from expectation and performance, inconsistent and easily withdrawn.

And God, in His faithfulness, is showing me how unloving my heart really is.

Yikes...this is not a pleasant ride.

As I was starting to get depressed about the state of my heart, Beth Moore pointed me towards a verse that lifted my spirit immediately...

"God is greater than our hearts." (1John3:20)

Hallelujah! There is hope after all! God is greater than my self-seeking heart! He CAN turn this heart of stone into a heart of flesh! That's Good News, indeed!

But how does it work?

I believe all the truths and the promises in the Bible...I believe God pours His divine love into me through His Holy Spirit, but somewhere that agape love gets stuck and doesn't seem to come out, at least for certain people.

I believe the Holy Spirit lives and reigns in me, but then why is it so hard to love in that sacrificial, lay-down-my-life kind of way? And why do I have to grit my teeth sometimes to be cordial to one particular person that seems to push every button I have? If this is the iron sharpening iron thing, fine...but shouldn't I be reaching a smoothness eventually where that agape love overcomes my selfish heart and all of a sudden I realize I actually DO love this person? Or is it a continual choice to love, rather than sense of love?

Love is so important to God, that without it, everything else is meaningless. (1 Cor 13:1-3) The prison ministry...a waste of time without love. The Alpha courses...same. My very presence here as a missionary...I might as well go home if I don't have His love giving meaning to what I say, do, think and live out.

So you see how this issue is important to me? If I don't have God's agape love, working in me and through me to others, I am wasting my time out here and a lot of people's money, and so I am desperate for that heart transplant. I don't want my life to be a series of meaningless efforts to do God's will...I want it to be full of the life-transforming power of agape, so that the people I minister to will see that there really IS hope because they will feel the touch of Love Himself. Somehow, when they look at me, they won't see me, but will see their Heavenly Father reaching out to them saying,

"Come, my beloved. I love you so much that I sent my own Son to die for you and rise again to bring you back to me. Come...I love you!"

Oh Father, that You would shine through the cracks in this weak jar of clay, transforming me even as You redeem the world around me. Let Your Kingdom come, Your will be done, on this earth, in my life, in my heart, as it is in Heaven. Because You are worthy.


Kathryn Taylor said...

Thanks for your honesty. It sounds like you are writing a chapter from everyone's book (or maybe just mine), but thank you for sharing how God's taking you through it all.

Otumidwa said...

yup, I could have taken those first three lines, copied, pasted, and signed my name. I was thinking of having this as my facebook status today "more love, less judgement. God help me!". I am going to look up that verse from John right away - maybe that will end up being my facebook status! Love you auntie (with my insufficient love). xxx

Laurie Ann said...

Absolutely beautiful post. Very convicting! I'm taking a look inward and discovering I have an area to work on!