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Do You Need Open Heart Surgery?
 
 
"If the heart is wrong, nothing can be right." - Barnes' Notes
 
What is the condition of your heart today? Do you need to call on the Great Physician - none other than the Lord Jesus - to come and remove things from your heart that should not be there?
 
Take the following inventory based on God's Holy Word to see if immediate surgery should be scheduled. 
 
1. Does God Have Your Whole Heart?
 
Proverbs 23:26 says - "My son, give me thine heart..."
 
There is only one thing that God requires from us all. Contrary to what many preach and teach, He is not after our money nor our possessions. He simply wants our heart. For when He has our heart, He has everything that pertains to us.
 
We are to set our love upon Him. When we do, our thoughts will be conversing with Him at all times. The intents of our heart will be fastened upon Him and Him alone. We will freely and cheerfully devote ourselves to what pleases Him and brings Him great joy.
 
2. Is Your Heart Straight And Steady For God?
 
1 Samuel 7:3 says - "And Samuel spake unto all the house of Israel, saying, If ye do return unto the LORD with all your hearts, then put away the strange gods and Ashtaroth from among you, and prepare your hearts unto the LORD, and serve Him only..."
 
A prepared heart is one that has put away all "strange gods." It has renounced and abandoned all idols or rivals which would dare to steal its affections from Jesus. It is one that is serious and steadfast in its consideration and resolution to be wholly for God.
 
Do we have that kind of heart today?
 
Or is our heart filled with competing rivals such as the love for money, possessions, pleasure, Self, reputation, power, preeminence, sports, education, position, etc.?
 
3. Is Your Obedience Universal?
 
1 Kings 8:61 says - "Let your heart therefore be perfect with the LORD our God, to walk in His statutes, and to keep His commandments, as at this day."
 
A perfect heart is one that is not divided, dissembling, or declining. It continues and perseveres in its duty to God - having no rivals to draw it away from its Absolute Surrender...hypocrisy to mar its Supreme Love...or evil intentions that would turn it from its object of Faith - the Lord Jesus Christ.
 
Do we have that kind of heart today?
 
4. Are You Living For Eternity?
 
Psalm 90:12 says - "So teach us to number our days, that we may apply our hearts unto wisdom."
 
A wise heart is one that sees the end from the beginning...is fully aware of the shortness and uncertainty of life...directs its steps accordingly... and lives with eternal principles in mind.
 
Do we have a wise heart? That will be determined by whether or not we are living only for the "now" or if we preparing for eternity with each decision that we make.  
 
5. Are You Closely Attending To The Word?
 
Proverbs 2:2 says - "So that thou incline thine ear unto wisdom, and apply thine heart to understanding."
 
Just how important is it to us that we obtain a fresh supply of God's wisdom and understanding with the start of each new day? It can be found in His Word. Therefore, what means are we taking to obtain it? Are we willing to sacrifice our time and plans so that we can dig for such "buried treasures" hidden within the pages of the Holy Bible?
 
6. Are You Keeping A Close Watch Over Your Heart?
 
Proverbs 4:23 says - "Keep thy heart with all diligence..."
 
There is no room for laziness in the Christian walk. It calls for a constant vigilance - a vigilance over the thoughts and affections of our heart. At all times and in every place, we must maintain a holy jealousy of ourselves - continuously policing our thoughts and affections so that they are set on the right objects and kept within due bounds.
 
7. Are You Directing Your Heart Aright?
 
Proverbs 23:19 says - "Hear thou, my son, and be wise, and guide thine heart in the way."
 
Wisdom comes through hearing profitable instruction. Hence, we must ask ourselves - are we teachable? Do we readily submit to the instruction of those whom God places over us to lead and guide us in the right way? Or do we have a tendency to be a stubborn, rebellious, and proud know-it-all?
 
Let's not forget - when our heart is guided in the ways of God, then our steps and conversation will also be ordered aright.
 
8. Are You Sincere In Your Obedience?
 
Ephesians 6:5 says - "Servants, be obedient...in singleness of your heart..."
Colossians 3:22 says - "Servants, obey in all things...not with eyeservice, as menpleasers, but in singleness of heart, fearing God."
 
Singleness of heart simply entails having a sincere desire to do that which ought to be done. It does not pretend obedience - while all along planning disobedience.
 
Are we serving the Lord Jesus today "in singleness of heart"? Are we speaking obedience with our mouth while our heart is filled with rebellion? Do we keep promising God that we will obey Him and yet we still go our own way or do our own thing?
 
9. Are You Easily Moved By The Sufferings Of Others?
 
Ephesians 4:32 says - "And be ye kind one to another, tender-hearted..."
 
To be "tender-hearted" is to be merciful and easily moved to pity and compassion by the pain, sufferings, and distresses of others. It is being disposed to want to help those who are less fortunate or struggling along life's way.
 
The opposite of being "tender-hearted" would be to be hardened in heart, cruel, mean, greedy, and covetous.
 
How do we respond when we hear of the troubles, sorrows, pain, misfortunes, and struggles that others are experiencing? Are we moved greatly? Or are we too consumed with our own selves to even care?   
 
10. Are Your Affections Vacillating Between Christ And The World?
 
James 4:8 says - "...Cleanse your hands, ye sinners, and purify your hearts, ye double minded."
 
Doublemindedness is a plague that is spreading rapidly throughout the Body of Christ today. It is highly contagious. Unless precautions are taken, when one member is exposed to others who have this disease, he, too, comes down with it.
 
What are its major symptoms? The person afflicted with this disease vacillates in purpose between serving God or Self. He halts between following good or evil. He cannot come to a clear-cut decision as to whether or not he should love the Lord or the world.
 
The immediate danger of this plague is that it races straight for the spiritual heart - bringing much defilement and even spiritual death with it. The only cure is a total cleansing in the Blood of Jesus after the person resolves to separate and consecrate himself to the Lord alone.
 
What about us? Have we come down with this terrible disease? Are we carriers - afflicting other members with our compromising, loose, and worldly standards?
 
After taking this inventory, what conclusions can be drawn concerning the state of your heart? Do you need surgery?
 
If so, then call on the Holy Spirit and schedule an appointment with the Great Physician. Let Him place you on the operating table today.
Determine that you will not get up until everything is removed that needs to be removed and your spiritual heart is made whole once again.
 
May God Bless His Word.
Connie