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|Weights, Debts, and Hearts|
January 15th 2012 - |
By: Rev. Justin Reinking / Oklahoma Youth President
New Year's resolutions are made year after year. Some are kept, others slow as the pace of life speeds up through the year, and others seem to stall before the snow stops falling in January. However attainable or realistic goals for a new year may be, often failure is experienced in reaching them. The infamous resolutions at the beginnings of each calendar year usually surround three topics: weights, debts, and hearts. The weights, debts, and hearts of man must be important to be included in nearly every list of determinations for improvement.
The spiritual condition of a believer is just as important as taking care of the weights of the physical body, the monetary debts of an individual, and improving the condition of relationships. Weights in the believer's heart can hold one back from full potential in serving God. Debts, or past mistakes and failuer, can also hinder a successful walk with God. Finally, a heart that is not in good condition harms the rest of the body. The same is true with the body of the Christian who neglects the heart.
Hebrews 12:1 instructs us to, "...lay aside every weight, and the sin which so doth easily beset us...". On the journey of life there times that 'weights' or extra things seem to weigh life down. It's like a person attemption to bring his luggage into the hotel lobby. He has a suitcase in one hand, a duffle bag strapped over his shoulder, his laptop bag in the other hand, his coat, and a to-go bag from the fast food restaurant barely holding on under his arm. To make matters worse he just got a phone call, so he's also on his cell phone trying to pull down his umbrella because it's also pouring rain. The weary, worn and weighted traveler looks overwhelmed and unable to take another step. He is the image of too many weights. Those weights will look differently for each person. Decide what yours are and as the New Year begins, consider taking off the weights, and sins that easily slow one down.
Debt. The word doesn't even sound good to say. It seems to have a negative connotation. America finds itself deep in debt. Many Americans are financially overwhelmed and feel they cannot dig out of the hole they've dug themselves into. What if that feeling begins to creep into your heart of a blood bought Christian? The feeling arises that it is impossible to pay for all the sin, hurts, and failures. It is the fear of the inability to remit, or give payment, for the stack of spiritual bills that are due. Thanksfully Jesus told His followers in Matthew 26:28 that His blood "...is shed for many for the remission of sins." The debt is paid in full. the payment has been received. The payment for the debt of sin is complete.
The visual shape of a heart is probably one of the most widely recognized symbols across all cultures and lands. All of humanity has one. Physically it is the source of life. The heart pumps blood to organs, muscles, and the entire human body. Without a heart a human is dead. The same could be said for those who follow Christ. A heart that is not in good condition with Him is dead. The same could be said for those who follow Christ. A heart that is not in good condition with Him is dead. Proverbs 4:23 describes how important the heart is, "Keep thy heart with all diligence; for out of it are the issues of life." To keep a healthy spiritual heart one needs to spend time in prayer, fasting, and reading the Bible. Giving more time to these spiritual disciplines is often on many New Year's resolutions lists. The reason is because the heart of the believer is vital to his success as a follower of Christ!