If we were to have a paper heart, we’d have to write what it is on it somehow. These days, if you had a paper heart given you by someone, it is a token of love. But if you think of all the heart is, it wouldn’t seem so lovely. I’m not talking about the human organ that keeps you alive every second of the day. I’m talking about the biblical heart.
My Bible has a full page stocked full of verses that tell you about the human heart. It’s so complex, but we’re not starting with the physical elements—that’s too complex for me. If you just try to call to mind some scriptures about the heart, for me, its mostly, “the heart is deceptive,” “it’s not what goes into your mouth that defiles, but what comes out of the mouth. For what comes out is from the heart,” and things such as that.
Yeah, the Bible says the heart is proud, foolish, deceitful, rebellious, perverse, evil, wicked, callous, malicious, and so many more depressing adjectives. It's many times hardened, darkened, deluded, unrepentant, unbelieving, prone to wandering and devoting itself to idols. It’s often filled with evil schemes and madness, and very far from God. Well, that’s the human heart at the beginning of it’s life. Not very impressive? You hear Jesus Christ changes everything, right?
BUT. The Bible also gives what the regenerate heart does. It cries out for God, seeks Him, responds to Him, trusts Him, and loves Him. It praises, sings to, rejoices in, is grateful to, and obeys God. It hides in itself and meditates on the words spoken to it by the One who loves and made it. It’s on fire for Him. It’s upright, truthful, steadfast, pure, wise, sincere, courageous, contrite, blameless and loving.
But, like Jacob, it still holds to it’s past many times. It can be as faithful as the Israelite forefathers, but it can be as cowardice and tormented and broken as Pharaoh’s during the exodus. It can be as courageous as Joshua’s, or it can be as deceitful and anguished as Judas Iscariot’s. It can be as glad and singing as Miriam’s when they crossed the Red Sea, or it can be as depressed and selfish as Korah’s when he confronted Moses and Aaron. It can remind others of the compassion of Christ, or the cruelty of the murderous Herod.
The contrast isn’t evolved, it is created. It is tested, influenced, directed, opened, touched, cleansed, written on, strengthened, and completely changed. In all these, God brings out the better of the person possessing it. It’s a slow process, and it takes a lot of change, a lot of work—a lot of surrendering.
So… maybe I’ll reject my idea of writing all the qualities of the human heart on my paper heart… it might burst.