A CROSS EXAMINED LIFE
Saturday, 22 December 2018
“Examine me, O LORD, and try me; Test my mind and my heart.”-Psalm 26:2
Though a Psalm of vindication whereby the psalmist tries to defend his integrity before God, the verse we will look into is one of examination. The Psalmist asks God to probe his mind (the seat of his thinking) and his heart (the seat of his emotions). Both these areas are, as we know it the innermost parts of a man that only God can see and examine.
THE COMPELLING NEED
Why is there a necessity to probe the heart and mind from time to time? Jeremiah 17:9 says, “The heart is deceitful above all things, And desperately wicked; Who can know it?” Many a time our shortfalls are like blind spots to us- we would rather see the speck in our brother’s eye and miss seeing the log in our own eye!! But Psalm94:11 [NLT] says, “The LORD knows people’s thoughts…..” Jesus spoke about how an evil heart can defile a person: “And then he added, “It is what comes from inside that defiles you. For from within, out of a person’s heart, come evil thoughts, sexual immorality, theft, murder, adultery, greed, wickedness, deceit, lustful desires, envy, slander, pride, and foolishness. All these vile things come from within; they are what defile you.” (Mark 7:20-23 NLT)
So we see how important a heart examination is from time to time. Unless we take time to allow God and His word to examine our heart and mind, we are sure to miss our mistakes.
Jeremiah 17:10 tells us: “I, the LORD, search the heart, I test the mind….” Once we have understood the disease of the heart, we need to find a cure! Just as a torch light allows its light into a darkroom for us to see, we must allow the light of God’s Word and His Spirit to show us those cobwebs of hidden sins. Proverbs 20:27 [NLT]: “The LORD's light penetrates the human spirit, exposing every hidden motive.” We need to cry out to the Lord when He exposes our sin: “Create in me a clean heart, O God, And renew a steadfast spirit within me.” (Psalm 51:10). Only the blood that Christ shed on the cross can ever be sufficient to take away our sin. But that requires a recognition and real repentance to turn from our sin and allow His cleansing: “If we claim we have no sin, we are only fooling ourselves and not living in the truth. But if we confess our sins to him, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all wickedness.” (1John 1:8,9 NLT)
THE CONSTANT MAINTENANCE
Once we have been cleansed by Christ and given the reins of our life to Him, we need to cooperate with the Holy Spirit to maintain a clean heart and thought life. Proverbs 4:23 [NLT] says, “Guard your heart above all else, for it determines the course of your life.” We need to pay attention to what goes in and what comes out!! If we deposit the treasure of His Word, be sure to reap the benefits of a principled life. God’s Word renews our mind! “And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.” (Romans 12:2). Besides feeding our mind the right things, we also need to choose what we chew on!! “Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy—meditate on these things.” (Phil. 4:8)
Let’s lead a godly life by following these principles!
Can this be our Prayer?
Search me, O God, and know my heart;
test me and know my anxious thoughts.
Point out anything in me that offends you,
and lead me along the path of everlasting life.
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