ODJ: if our hearts . . .

May 9, 2015 

READ: Luke 6:43-45 

For you look deep within the mind and heart, O righteous God (Psalm 7:9).

As I stood deep in the bush of rural Uganda watching a rig I’d contracted to drill a well for 700 impoverished villagers, an elderly man approached me. He grasped my hands and in broken English said, “If you could open my heart and view inside, you would see happiness on top of happiness on top of happiness for this water God has provided.”

Though I couldn’t see within the man, his words gave me insight into the overflow of his heart: gratitude, humility, meekness and reverence for the Lord were evident. “What you say flows from what is in your heart,” Jesus said. “A good person produces good things from the treasury of a good heart, and an evil person produces evil things from the treasury of an evil heart” (Luke 6:45).

He also said in Matthew 15:18, “The words you speak come from the heart—that’s what defiles you.” God’s Word instructs us to guard our “heart above all else, for it determines the course of [our] life” (Proverbs 4:23).

If our hearts are full of bitterness or hatred, we’re prone to speak ill of others. This ultimately results in broken relationships and isolation.

If our hearts are full of love and compassion, we’re prone to speak lovingly to others and encourage them rather than condemn them. This can result in healthy, edifying relationships.

If our hearts are weighed down by fear, we won’t have the confidence to move forward as God leads. That’s why Scripture tells us, “Trust in the LORD with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding. Seek his will in all you do, and he will show you which path to take” (Proverbs 3:5-6).

Today, let’s consider the many reasons our hearts can express joy and gladness before God!

—Roxanne Robbins

365-day-plan: Job 2:1-13

Read Psalm 86:12 and consider what it means to worship God with all your heart. 
What’s been flowing from your heart recently? How can gratitude and praise to God help fill your heart with good things?