Pure Hearts

Clean It Up!


Early one Saturday morning before having his breakfast, little Bobby snuck in the kitchen grabbed three chocolate chip cookies and ate them in his bed leaving chocolate stains and crumbs all over his sheets.

Later that day, he taunted his little sister and shoved her, making her cry.

A little later on, he grabbed an egg from the refrigerator and threw it at the neighbor’s window.

When his parents found out all these things he had done, they were so disappointed in Bobby. Unapologetic, Bobby rolled his eyes and sneered not feeling any remorse or guilt for what he had done.

Later that evening, Bobby, his little sister and parents went to the store to pick up dinner. Not having yet dealt with Bobby, his parents allowed him to tag along.

Bobby sees a toy race car that he really wants.

“Mom!” Bobby screams.

“I want this! I REALLY want this! Please, please, please!!”

Bobby’s Mother glanced at Bobby knowing that she wasn't buying him anything because of his recent behavior.

“Please Mom! Pleeeeeaaase!”

Bobby got louder and louder and began to make a scene. Bobby’s Dad grabbed him and started walking him toward the exit. Bobby was consistent in asking for the toy car until they walked out of the store. He pouted all the way home because he didn't get what he wanted.
This is exactly what we do to God. ALL the time.

We, a lot of times, are oblivious to our sin, not realizing that God wants to deal with the sin in our hearts before he grants us our desires. Yet we beg and plead, fuss and complain because we are not getting the things we want, not even realizing that there is a bigger issue at hand. Our hearts.

Can you imagine God shaking His head at us as we beg for what we want when He can clearly see what’s truly in our hearts? Can you imagine how much more God wants to clean our hearts than merely giving us with the things we are begging for?

We forget that just like Bobby’s parents, God sees our hearts. He knows our motive. Not only does He hear us when we ask Him, but He knows WHY we are asking Him. And just like a loving parent, He knows that correcting and shaping our character is much more important than giving us everything we want.

God is not in the business of making sure we have pleasurable lives, He is in the business of our hearts. He is in the business of shaping and molding our hearts to be a reflection of His. He is in the business of breaking us until we realize our dire need for Him. And because He loves us, He works endlessly on transforming our desires into His desires for us.

This past month, God showed this to me clearly. And once I realized that I was acting just like Bobby, begging and pleading with God for my selfish desires without acknowledging the sin in my heart, I felt so convicted. I realized what I was doing was wrong, and I began to notice that God wanted so much more for me than what I was asking Him for.

This realization pierced my heart so much that I actually prayed and asked God not to grant me my desires until my heart is clean and clear of any mess that will get in the way of the joy I will have when He lovingly grants me what He has in store for me.

Now that is definitely a risky and scary prayer to pray, but I want God to know how serious I am. I no longer want to walk in oblivion to my sinful actions. I no longer want to hurt people in the process. My heart is a construction zone and only God alone can help me clean it up.

So when the time comes and God begins to pour out blessings on me, I want my heart to be free and clear, open and ready to receive all that He has in store for me. Until then, “clean up on aisle 9!”




Reference Scriptures:

"Purify me from my sins, and I will be clean; wash me, and I will be whiter than snow. Oh, give me back my joy again; you have broken me -- now let me rejoice. Don't keep looking at my sins. Remove the stain of my guilt. Create in me a clean heart, O God. Renew a right spirit within me." - Psalm 51:7-10 (NLT)

"Take delight in the Lord, and he will give you your heart’s desires." - Psalm 37:4 (NLT)

"I will open the windows of heaven for you. I will pour out a blessing so great you won’t have enough room to take it in! Try it! Put me to the test!"Malachi 3:10 (NLT)

Actions Speak Louder Than Words, Hearts Speak Louder Than Actions

What if for a day, your heart was on display? What if everyone’s heart was on the outside of their body instead of hidden inside? It would be the first thing that everyone sees when they see you coming. How would your perception of the people you know change? How would others’ perception of YOU change?

Some people wouldn’t even leave their house for fear of judgment. So many people would be shocked of the truth that their friends were hiding. Many would be surprised that the people they thought they knew were totally different. Sad to say, it has become quite easy for people to act one way but feel another. And this truth makes it more and more difficult to discern who’s for real and who’s not.

My Dad told me something that I will carry with me forever. He said,

“Never allow others to confuse your actions from your heart.”

At first I didn’t quite understand what he meant by this, but the older I became, the more it resonated with me. Overtime I began to clearly understand what he meant.

Growing up, I struggled with wanting to control others perception of me. It kept me from being 100% genuine. I ended up saying and doing things to try to win over the approval and acceptance of others and would often find myself misunderstood. At the time I didn’t understand why. It was because I wasn’t being true to myself. I was allowing myself to be controlled by what I wanted people to see in me instead of just being me! I didn’t fully accept my introverted, creative self because in comparison to my surroundings, I was a rarity. There wasn’t many like me. I struggled with not understanding that so I tried to be like everybody else, losing myself in the process. Sounds like a recipe for being miserable huh?

This is why I thank God for deliverance and growth. To be honest, it took me until my adult years to get to a place of full acceptance and contentment with the way God created me. I thank God that He delivered me from seeking approval from people. Through a combination of diligence and my experiences, God showed me exactly who I was. He showed me the reasons he made me the way that I am and clearly showed me how refreshing individuality can be. It still hurts at times when people judge me based on outward appearance and what they think they know of me when it’s not the truth. But it doesn't hurt as much anymore because I’m secure. I’m secure in knowing my worth and my value, I know how perfect God sees me and who he created me to be, and THAT is who I am.

“For a man looks at the outward appearance, but The Lord looks at the heart.” 1 Samuel 16:7

Because of God’s gentle rearing and developing, I have been able remain consistent with the parallelism of my actions and my heart. I am constantly reminded that God sees what’s in my heart first before anything else. I constantly pray over my heart that I will forever be true to myself and that my motives and intentions will forever remain pure. Like my Daddy said, I never want my actions and my heart to confuse the people around me. That could easily ruin my witness.

Take time and ask God to show you if there is anything hiding in your heart that needs to be removed. He will show you. Continually make efforts to line up your actions with what’s truly in your heart and you will find that because of your sincerity and the light you emit, the same kind of people will be drawn to you.


Reference Scriptures:
1 Samuel 16:7

HEAL Them With Kindness

Have you ever heard of the common saying, "Kill them with kindness"? I always wondered why it was phrased that way. It makes kindness sound like a weapon or a manipulatory tool used to get what you want. That's not the purpose for being kind to someone at all. We forget that even though we think we are doing the right thing, God ALWAYS looks at our hearts and will judge us based on our motives and not just our actions. The motive behind the things we do is our truth. It's who we really are. The people around us may not know our motives but God does, and he knows exactly why we do the things that we do.

"The human heart is the most deceitful of all things, and desperately wicked. Who really knows how bad it is? But I, the Lord, search all hearts and examine secret motives. I give all people their due rewards, according to what their actions deserve." - Jeremiah 17:9-10

With that being said, it is important that we on a daily basis ask God to clean our hearts from any hatred, jealousy, envy, unforgiveness, bitterness or anything that is in there that is not like Him. It definitely is a daily struggle. Afterall, we ARE human and we tend to have these feelings in our hearts on occasion. 

However, we have the choice to harbor those feelings and allow them to fester and grow, or we can choose to acknowledge them (and not pretend we are perfect and it's not there) and ask God to release those feelings from our hearts. I try my best to make sure when I pray to ask God to show me the things about myself that I may not want to see but need to see. And He does.
Sometimes it hurts and is shocking to know that I have things in my heart that I'm not proud of. But because God is a forgiving God and a cleansing God, I make sure I ask Him to help me clean up the mess that's in my heart and make me pure for the days ahead.

With a pure and righteous heart, I am better able to respond to people who come at me in any negative way. Because my heart is in a better condition, I am able to easily recognize when someone is hurting. They may be disguised as a mean, negative, hateful person but sometimes it's best to take a moment, breathe and ask God to help you by giving you the strength to be kind to them (because Lord knows if it were up to me I wouldn't be able to lol). Understand that it definitely requires supernatural power to be able to hold our tongues when someone is coming at us sideways. Sometimes everything within us wants to snap back and give them everything they are spewing at us. When this happens, I try my best to remember,

"A gentle answer deflects anger, but harsh words make tempers flare." - Proverbs 15:1

Wherever someone says things to you that may hurt you or may cause you to want to brush them off and look the other way, don't. Realize that it's not them. It's a quality or characteristic in them that God has not yet perfected. Continue to love them, be kind to them and pray for them. God is still working on them. The less you take personal, the more you can look past those "unfinished attributes" and love the God that's in them. With this attitude you can actually help them reach a place of wholeness faster. But harsh words and cold shoulders do nothing but make the imperfections in them grow worse. How you respond to them could actually determine how slowly or quickly they improve. 

Swallowing your preferred choice words and being kind will calm any angry person down. Your motive shouldn't be just to shut them up, but to help them. My preferred saying is to "HEAL them with kindness". Your genuine kindness could be just what they need to kickstart their journey to becoming whole again.


Reference Scriptures: