Darin Hufford, in a recent podcast said, “The more you get somebody away from their heart, the more they can be controlled.”
Religion is all about conformity. We’re taught that there’s only one way to do it. Our christian life is all mapped out by a set of rules that we’re expected to follow and our standing in the church is determined by how well we keep the rules. The result is a powerless religion that leaves us shamed and frustrated.
The truth is that Jesus came to set us free from a performance based religion. He came to bring us into a relationship with our Father that is alive and fulfilling and he does this through the desires he places in our hearts.
In religion, we’re taught that the heart is deceitfully wicked. That’s an Old Testament verse that was spoken to a group of believers who didn’t have the life of God in their hearts. Today, Jesus lives in our hearts and we’ve been given a new heart which Jim Robbins describes as our “good and noble hearts.”
Religion has taught us that we can’t trust our hearts. Yet, God wants to lead us through our good and noble hearts. Because of that false teaching, we’ve shut ourselves away from our hearts. The result is that we’ve lost the ability to hear our hearts and to be led by them. Instead, we now depend on external voices to give us direction.
We pore over the Bible looking for a verse that will tell us what to do. We go to church, notebook in hand, hoping the sermon will finally give us the answer we seek. Yet, all the time, the answer is in our hearts but we won’t go there because we’re afraid of being deceived.
For years, that’s how I lived my life. I didn’t even know that I could listen to my heart and I actually didn’t even know how to listen. God is now bringing me to a place where I’m learning to hear my heart and to trust its voice. Teachers like Darin Hufford and Jim Robbins have been instrumental in helping me grow in this area of my life.
I’m currently reading a book entitled “Introvert Power” by Laurie Helgoe. Although the focus of the book is to encourage introverts and to teach us how to live successfully in an extrovert world, I’m finding that the author is also showing me how to tap into and recognize the desires of my heart and to flow with them. This book has taken me to a level of freedom that I’ve only dreamed about.
This has been an exciting journey and, the last few years, God has completely re-shaped my life as a believer. Today, it looks totally different than it used to look. The changes in me have been so dramatic that I’m no longer totally uncomfortable with allowing God to lead me into new and uncharted territory. Years ago, as I started this journey into the unknown, he spoke the following scripture to my heart and today, I’m seeing it fulfilled as I follow the desires of my heart.
"Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past. See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the desert and streams in the wasteland." (Isaiah 43:18-19)