Monday, January 6, 2014

Guard My Heart & Guide My Steps

I've always saw singleness like double dutch

For those who don't know what double dutch is, its a game played where you have two people on opposite ends of the jump rope and they are holding two jump ropes in each hand and they turn their hand in a circular motion going inwards. The person on the outside of the rope has to jump in at the right time. If you jump in too early and off beat you get hit by the rope, but if you don't jump in at all then you'll be standing there looking like an idiot with people just randomly swinging ropes. As soon as you are in you have to keep up with the rhythm of the ropes, if not you won't last too long. Sometimes you jump in at the right time and stay in the rhythm for a while, sometimes you jump in and only after a few hops you mess up.

We feel like that sometimes when people we are attracted to come into our lives. When we see someone we like, we play this weird dance. We don't want to jump the gun too early and completely mess up something that could have been fun but you don't want to miss out and stand outside waiting when the invitation is clearly there. Even when you do hope in on time and sometimes you only make a few hops before you completely mess up.

I have come across this issue countless times during my long single life. A girl will always come along and I can see the invitation. I think to myself "OK I see the invitation, I see the opening, I have done this countless times, I know how to jump in, lets see if there is the time where I stay in there long."
I JUMP IN...after some successful few hops, I completely fail and the have to wait until the rope started spinning again.

What I would love, was if there was some kind of timer or green light. As soon as you are supposed to jump in, the light turns green and a metronome sound beeps so you know what pace to stay on. Things like that I always felt would make jumping in so easy. ( And FYI I ain't talking about jump rope).

The thing is, is that we do have a green light. It's called GOD.

I know corny connection right? But it is soo true.

The reason being is this, when we take that leap of faith of jumping into the complications of double dutch relationships what serves as our green light? Our heart! Why? Because that is what we were told to follow by society.

The common phrase now-a-days is "Follow your heart". I hear it from my friends all the time. I can be bit over calculating when it comes to when a girl likes me. I think of the possible outcomes of dating the person, traits that based on the past I have had a tough time with (women who swear, excessively drink, don't go to church, etc.) and when I explain to my friends (which I have now learned not to do) why I feel I should pursue anything with that girl the first thing that comes out of their mouth is

"You should follow your heart"

 What's crazy about this statement is that is very un-Christian.

"The heart is deceitful above all things and beyond cure. Who can understand it?" -Jeremiah 17:9
Why would you follow something that at times is deceitful? If you knew someone who was deceitful and they told you, "Hey follow me, it's ok your friend's think its a good idea" would you go?
So then what are you supposed to do? You don't want to to whimsically put your heart out there for it to be shot down, but you also don't want to be a like the Tin-Man in the Wizard of Oz with no heart so what are you supposed to do?

The mindset I have came up with for the year of 2014 is:

"God guard my heart and guide my steps" 

The mantra came from this:

1) I want Christ to reside in my heart.

"So that Christ may dwell in your heart through faith-that you, being rooted and grounded in love" - Ephesians 3:17
He has knit me in my mother's womb. He knows me better than I know myself, so why allow my myself to mislead myself? Why allow the ghost of "What If?" to plague my mind? I'd rather have the Holy Spirit be control of the "What Is" than to allow the Ghost of Doubt control the "What If"

2) The heart tells a lot of our character. 

Jesus says it best in Mark 7: 20-23 when He talks about the heart and how it doesn't what we put IN our body but rather what comes OUT:
"Don't you see that nothing that enters a person from the outside can defile them? For it doesn't go into the heart but into their stomach, and then out of the body" He went on: "What comes out of a person is what defiles them. For it is from within, out of a person's heart that evil thoughts come - sexual immorality, theft, murder, adultery, greed, malice, deceit, lewdness, envy, slander, arrogance, and folly. All these evils come from inside and defile a person" - Jesus

3) Our own heart can be deceitful

Kinda like how I mentioned before that the heart above everything else is deceitful so why blindly only follow it?

4) God has set eternity in the hearts of man

"He has made everything beautiful in its time. He has also set eternity in the human heart; yet no one can fathom what God has done from beginning to end." - Ecclesiastes 3:11

I love this verse. This verse to me speaks volumes and is so true. God has something planned that the human heart can not even fathom. So instead of trying to comprehend it, instead of trying to lean in your own understanding, why not humbly accept that you are not in control of everything?

5) I don't know where I am going. But God does

"Direct my footsteps according to Your word; let no sin rule over me." - Psalms 119: 133

I don't know where I am ultimately going, but God does. Although I have eternity set in my heart, I have a mind that cannot fathom who He is, what I do have is feet that can walk. So while I walk on this path of God I want Him to guide me and direct me to where it is I have to go.

These five things lead to the one statement of "Guard my Heart & Guide my Steps"

I want God to guard my heart. Not like you would see in cartoons with a big castle, a wide moat, and a fire breathing dragon outside. But guard it like a football player would guard a football. Held underneath his arm tightly, running with full speed and power with the one goal of taking it to the end zone. And when I arrive to where it is I need to be, to be let go in cheer and in victory spiked down on the ground.

I pray to God to keep it safe, to correct it, to nurture it, for it grow so that when the time comes He can let it go to where it needs to be let go. While He is nurturing my heart I want Him to guide my steps and show me where it is I need to be. What it is He needs me to do. What things I should stay away from.

So I pray the same to all of you, those who in this season that are walking the single path. Pray that God might guard your hear and guide your step. Pray that God might cultivate your heart, not just for the sole purpose of finding a spouse but to be an instrument for whatever gift or ministry He has for you.