Why Does Your Heart Harden?
by Michael Hinson
Are you aware that certain things can harden your heart? Examine yourself, and consider a few things that can slowly harden your heart and ease you away from intimacy with God. God told us in Exodus 20:3-4, "You shall have no other gods before me. You shall not make for yourself an idol in the form of anything in heaven above or on the earth beneath or in the waters below."
To Christians in this modern world, this may seem like an odd phrase to repeat when most people no longer appear to worship graven images. However, understanding the truth of this passage is important today. Jesus clarified this concept when Satan tempted Him to worship him (Satan) instead of God. Jesus said to him, "Away from me, Satan! For it is written: 'Worship the Lord your God, and serve him only'" (Matthew 4:10). Satan was asking Jesus to turn away from God, put His (Jesus') trust and faith in Satan, and serve in his kingdom.
No one but Satan worshipers admit to putting their faith and trust in the devil. However, when we put our faith and trust in the kingdom of this world instead of in God, we trust the devil. Satan was not asking Jesus just to worship him, but to serve him as well. Jesus said, "NO!" to both issues. When we put our faith and trust in our money or in the things we earned by our own endeavors, we shift our trust from God to the kingdom of this world. Some may think this is not a problem because they do not have a lot of money in which to put their trust. It is not a matter of money, but of where or in what or in whom we place our trust. The Bible says greed (whether you have money or not) is idolatry (Colossians 3:5).
Jesus told us, "For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also" (Matthew 6:21). Though you are a spirit being, you do operate and live on an everyday, human earthly level. You will give your time and attention to the things you value or treasure the most. Within your daily activity, you get distracted. We give priority to things that are not in God's perfect plan for your life and thus your heart slowly turns and focuses on the things of this world instead of God. Material things are not bad. He knew you would need them. He provided them for you and He even called them good (Genesis 1). However, ask yourself "Is my heart in pursuit of God and serving Him through serving others or is my heart seeking only its own and taking care of its own self?"
...love is not self-seeking... (1 Corinthians 13:5). When you are in lack or hurting, you will seek relief first and you should. You can best serve others when you are whole. Before you got into this condition, were you living for God and serving others, or were you living for yourself? Was your focus all about you, your needs and your life or was it bigger than your world alone? When you are walking in agreement with God's nature, you will be living for Him and thinking of others before you live for yourself. Think about it for a minute; know the answer in your heart.
Take your job out of this equation for a moment and answer this question. Would your schedule (where you spend your time) and your checkbook (where you spend your money) confirm your answer? Why not? If you have been self serving, greedy, dependent on your wealth, income, what you produce for your existence or on someone else other than God; now is the time to change and take on Jesus' nature. Repeat this prayer from your heart:
"Father, I confess that I have not put all my trust and faith in You. I also have been (say the ones that apply) self-serving, selfish, self centered, greedy, trusting in myself and what I can produce. I have trusted in my wealth, my income, or have been trusting in the things of this world instead of You. That is idolatry and I repent in Jesus' name. Father, forgive me this sin. I give You all of my heart and will serve You alone from this day forth in Jesus' name. Father, I thank You for your forgiveness and Your love. Amen."
Paul gave us instruction that can keep your heart focused. "Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things" (Colossians 3:1-2).
Michael Hinson has distinctive and revolutionary teachings that simplify every aspect of the Word of God. His instruction lays the foundation for a change of thinking (repentance) and ultimately healing in spirit, soul and body. His revelations on the nature and character of God lead people into a new reality of the life that Jesus bought for them.
Michael is known for his powerful gifts of healing and a strong gift of discernment. However, he is best known for his ability to bring healing to, and ignite flames in the hearts of people in need. His love for God's Word and His people are united together in a ministry that truly reflects the Heart of God.
Scripture quotations are from the Holy Bible, New International Version®. NIV®. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society. Used by permission of Zondervan Publishing House. All rights reserved.