Week 40 Thursday

A Soft Heart

Today’s scripture selection: Proverbs 28

Key verse: Proverbs 28:14

Have you ever accused someone of being “hard hearted”?

If you have – you’ve quoted Scripture.

It’s a very Biblical concept; this idea of someone who is so cold, so unfeeling, that he or she is said to have a hardened heart.  It’s what Egypt’s Pharaoh had – the one who tormented the Hebrew slaves and pursued them into the desert – to his own peril.  It’s what Pilate had – when he callously judged Christ.  It’s what those who cheered while Christians were thrown to the lions had.  And it’s what any who have oppressed others, for whatever reason, have had – a stone-cold heart – incapable of compassion or mercy.

And Scripture is very clear about it.  We should try and do whatever we can to steer clear of the problem.  We want hearts that are easily wounded; feeling; pained at other’s pain.  We want to be “soft-hearted” in the best sense of that term.

Proverbs makes it clear:

“Blessed are those who always tremble before God, but whoever hardens their heart falls into trouble.”

Now, I don’t think most people start out in life already ready to harden their hearts.  I don’t think everyone begins their life’s journey just waiting and wanting to find ways to hurt others.  And while it may be a part of our human nature to do so; we also have great capacity for compassion and love.

So what makes the difference?

Look at the Proverb again: “Blessed are those who always tremble before God…”

There it is.  When we are willing to kneel humbly before God, with a desire to follow God’s precepts, recognizing their holy value for our lives – and for others too – that’s when we find the way to keep our hearts nice and soft.  Even in a very cold, cruel world.

So keep watch over your heart.  There are dark forces in the world that want to help you turn it into something rock hard.  But don’t let them.  Keep it sensitive and loving.

Just like God.

Prayer: Father, may my heart always be as yours, filled with compassion and grace.  AMEN.

 

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