Here is a great picture of the blood vessels of our heart. There’s a lot more of them than you would imagine! When they are working well we don’t even notice them delivering the essential oxygen to keep our heart beating about 65 times per minute. But when they become damaged, hardened or blocked we experience chest pain, an inability to perform our regular tasks and as is often the case, a “heart attack”.
The Bible often uses the heart as a metaphor for our relationships with God, each other and the world. The heart is mentioned about 600-800 times depending on your version. As we finished up our series in Numbers last week we saw that the generation of Israelites who had witnessed the miraculous delivery from Egypt were prevented from entering the promised land because their “hearts were hard”.
They grumbled, disbelieved, were timid, argued against God, disobeyed – all the while building up a hardness of heart. Like them our hearts can gradually become hard too, through hurt, grief, unmet expectations, lethargy and laziness. We probably don’t even feel it happening.
Let’s be encouraged to keep our hearts soft, open, undamaged. Walk with one another to help you maintain this. Open heart surgery, whether physical or spiritual is a long and painful journey. Don’t get a surprise at a check up one day!
“See to it brothers and sisters, that none of you has a sinful, unbelieving heart that turns away from the living God. But encourage one another daily…so that none of you may be hardened by sin’s deceitfulness… as has just been said “Today, if you hear his voice, do not harden your hearts as you did on the rebellion.” Hebrews 3:12-15