16 January 2018
GraceNotes – A Journey of Discovery
Scripture: Matthew 5:1-12 (Click link for scripture in Bible Gateway)
God blesses those whose hearts are pure, for they will see God. (Matthew 5:8 NLT)
Those whose hearts are pure (that’s the condition we’re looking for) will see God (that’s the blessing that comes from heart purity). Purity of heart opens our spiritual eyes to see God in creation, in our circumstances and situations, and in others.
3 Who may climb the mountain of the LORD? Who may stand in his holy place? 4 Only those whose hands and hearts are pure... (Psalm 24:3–4 NLT)
Having a pure heart is an unreserved commitment to relationship with God in contrast with outward purity of rituals and self-improvement efforts. The focus is on our heart, the center of our very being, not our intellect or our ritual actions.
It almost seems like a contradiction, but the way our hearts get pure and the way our hearts stay pure isn’t by working overtime to try to avoid letting our bad attitude, our selfishness, our critical spirit toward others show. It’s not about covering up stuff. It’s not about trying to balance the ledger so our good deeds outweigh our selfish deeds.
After a horrendous sin against God and people who trusted him, King David prayed… Create in me a pure heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me. (Psalm 51:10 NIV)
Getting our hearts pure and keeping our hearts pure starts with recognizing that they aren’t! Then simply being honest with our holy Father about how we really are! Then asking and receiving his forgiveness and cleansing—one more time or one thousand more times! Then turning to look right at him with the simple faith of a trusting and very dependent child!
Father, When I get closer to you, I’m more aware of the ways my heart gets polluted by all the stuff in me and the stuff around me. At first, sometimes, that makes me want to hide how I’m really thinking or feeling. Thanks for being so patient and persistent in using your Word and your Spirit to draw me closer, to help me get really honest, and to forgive me so graciously—again and again! I want to shorten the time between conviction and confession, between awareness and response. I love you, Father, and I love your ways! In Jesus’ Name!