“These people draw near to Me with their mouth, And honor Me with their lips, But their heart is far from Me. And in vain they worship Me, Teaching as doctrines the commandments of men.” Matthew 15:7-9
At church every time the doors are opened. Serving on several committees. Teaching Sunday School. Spiritually starved in the middle of religion. Rarely if ever opening God’s Word; they did not realize how hollow, hard, prideful, judgmental, critical and far from God she had become. Both husband and wife had become unteachable.
It’s so easy to play church; to spiritually deceive ourselves, right into becoming unusable. When we operate in our own strength and power; we play the part of a Christian, rather than being Christian. We deceive ourselves; when we participate in spiritual activity, for activity’s sake.
How many of us sit on the church pew? Looking good on the outside, all the while dead inside. Faithful, active church members everywhere come to church, more out of habit and obligation than joy. Our hearts are desperately wicked and needy of God’s grace. 1 Chronicles 7:14 comes to mind. “If my people which are called by My Name, will humble themselves and pray, and seek my face, then I will hear from heaven and forgive their sin and heal their land.”
One year ago, I was filled with extreme fatigue. Upon waking; I felt as tired and weary, as when I had lain down for my night’s rest. I was cleaning a friend’s house. I cleaned the basement, the first floor and when I headed to the second floor; I could hardly breathe. Having asthma, I thought it was lung related.
I called my doctor’s office to ask a few questions. The nurse was encouraging me to go to the hospital. After speaking with her about three different times; I loaded up my stuff and headed to the hospital. I indeed had a blockage in my heart.
When an artery is blocked; the blood flow is restricted and the heart cannot operate to it’s fullest capacity. A stint had to be placed within the artery to hold it open, so that it could be restored to it’s proper function.
Just as neglecting our physical heart condition can be fatal, so can neglecting our spiritual heart function. God intends for us to live a spiritually empowered life. He wants to open up His vessels and restore us to operate fully in Christ alone.
Oh God, deliver us from religion.
What is the condition of your heart? Are you pretending to be a Christian; going through the motion, playing church? Truth be told; you may need heart surgery or possibly even a heart transplant. Search your heart, to see if there is any wicked way in you. Stop spiritually starving yourself. Open up your heart to the One who is ready and able to repair the damage.
By the way, the husband and wife referred to in this devotional, became broken before God, repented and are now serving Him with their whole hearts.
Prayer in Motion:
“Search me oh God and see if there be any wicked way in me. Renew a right spirit within me and lead me into the way everlasting.” (Psalm 139:23) Forgive me for all the times I have played the part of a Christian; rather than be Christian. Thank You Lord for restoring my spiritual heart function. I only want to operate in Your strength. In Jesus Name I pray. Amen