Let Not Our Hearts

Hardened hearts struggle to hear the still small voice within.  When we become cold and calloused to the world, whispers seem impossible to discern.  However, when we are in constant communion with Christ, our hearts remain tender and receptive toward Him.

As the story of Moses continues in Exodus, I have arrived at the passage where he and Aaron are told by God to go to Pharaoh to again ask to let the people go.  God warns them that Pharaoh’s heart will be hard, so He tells them to speak of the impending plague that will befall the Nile, if Pharaoh refuses to allow the people to go.  Pharaoh, of course chooses to not allow the people their freedom, and Moses and Aaron did as the Lord commanded, and all the water in the Nile changed into blood.  “But the Egyptian magicians did the same by their secret arts, and Pharaoh’s heart became hard; he would not listen to Moses and Aaron, just as the Lord had said.” – (Exodus 7:22)

Pharaoh responded in the same way to plagues of frogs, gnats, and flies.  Though he would call out to Moses and Aaron in the midst of the struggle, and began to seem as though he was willing to allow the people to go, the moment relief was found, his heart was again hardened and his mind set against their going.

Often, we are just like Pharaoh.  Our hearts are hardened until a need is present, and then – then we are ready and willing to call on Christ.  Suddenly, we are passionately pursuing the One we have all but forgotten for so long.  When the crisis is over and all is well, we set Him aside and go back to business as usual.  No more.  I am not called to live like Pharaoh.  My example of how to be in a right relationship with God, is found through Jesus.  He lived out His days loving God, and loving people.  Detours and difficulty did not deter Him from that call.  Always, even as He was hanging on the cross between two criminals, with one hurling insults at Him – He chose to love.  May our hearts be ever tender towards Christ, and may we live out our days, loving God and people, just as we are loved by Him.

Let not our hearts,Let Not Our Hearts

become cold and hard;

self-sufficient,

to Him, no regard.

Rather, let’s love,

as He has loved us;

with heart’s tender,

open to Jesus.

May our ears hear,

the tender small voice;

that will direct,

if we seek His choice.

Dear Heavenly Father, thank You that You love us so much that You sent Your Son to suffer and die in our place.  Thank You that You made the way for us to enter into a relationship with You, not just for now, but one that lasts into eternity.  Forgive us for being fickle in our faith, or for hardening our hearts to hearing You.  Help us to be plugged in and present, so that our hearts may be tender and full of trust in You.  May we love as You love us, and may many come to know the blessings found in belonging to You.  May the words of our mouth and the direction of our path, be pleasing unto You.  Amen.

© Shannon Elizabeth Moreno and Revelations in Writing, May 2011 – present.

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Called to Love

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAIf we long to follow,

the greatest command;

it is all about love,

for God and for man.

We are called to love God,

with heart, strength and soul;

and love well our neighbors,

our worship made whole.

This love is not showy,

it is kind; sincere;

all glory points to Christ,

His presence so near.

May our every action,

line up with belief;

even when no one sees,

let love bring relief.

To live our lives for Christ,

an eternal gain;

those who deny the truth,

suffer senseless pain.

So let us rise up, church,

be people who love;

may the difference they see,

reflect God above.

(Responding to Mark 12:29-31, 38-40)

Dear Heavenly Father, thank You that You first loved us. Thank You that You created us to give and receive love. Thank You that You sent Your Son, Jesus, to model how we might love with all of our heart, soul and strength; and how to love our neighbors as ourselves. Forgive us for not loving as You love. Remove any wrong motive in us, and help us to love with pure hearts, expecting nothing in return. Teach us to rely on You for our filling, as You alone can satisfy the empty spaces within us. Lead us to love well, even when no one sees. Thank You that the only opinion of us that matters, is Yours. Thank You that You already love us beyond what we can fathom, just as we are, yet love us enough that You are willing to walk beside us in all things, so that we may more clearly be reflections of You. May many come to know Your saving grace through our obedient outpouring of Your love. Amen.

© Shannon Elizabeth Moreno and Revelations in Writing, May 2011 – present.

We truly are made to love. Enjoy Made To Love, by Toby Mac. (Click the title in green.)

Purposeful Patience

image by Amy Cooper

image by Amy Cooper

Young son of Jesse,

stood dripping in oil.

Saul’s torment began,

rebellion’s recoil.

God chose not by looks,

the one He’d have lead.

He looked at the heart,

willingness to heed.

The irony great,

as Saul sent for one,

to play him the harp,

received Jesse’s son.

Young David drew near,

his harp brought relief,

to Saul’s suffering,

glimpse of grace in his grief.

Saul did not yet know,

that God did appoint,

this calming young man,

the king of His choice.

(Responding to 1 Samuel 16)

Dear Heavenly Father, thank You that our usefulness is not determined by our outward appearance, but rather You look straight to our hearts.  Help us to keep our hearts right before You, so that we are ever willing and ready to respond as You ask.  Forgive us for our impatience in the wait between the time a promise is spoken, and the fulfillment.  Thank You that Your timing is perfect, and ours is not.  May we have patience like David had, as he knew he had been anointed to lead a nation, but his time had not yet come.  He was faithful to listen and learn all of the lessons that You had for him in the wait.  May we be like that too.  May our patience and perseverance point the way to You, our Prince of Peace, for those who know You not.  Amen.

© Shannon Elizabeth Moreno and Revelations in Writing, May 2011 – present