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The Heart

January 27, 2016
By PASTOR ROGER LEMKE , Pine Island Eagle

To the Biblical Hebrew mind, the heart is like the tip of St. James City, or the tip of Bokeelia. It is the place where all emotions, prejudices, moods, ideas and convictions converge.

Just as the high lead levels in Flint are creating governmental questions, so evil acts cause us to question the condition of our hearts. Biblically, the heart is the center of our spiritual life. If a person's actions are evil, it's not enough to change habits, one must get to the heart of the problem, which is a problem with the heart.

When someone barks at you, do you bark back or bite your tongue? That depends on the state of your heart.

When your schedule is too tight or your to-do list too long, do you lose your cool or keep it? That depends on the state of your heart.

When you are offered a morsel of gossip marinated in slander, do your turn it down or pass it on? That depends on the state of your heart.

Do you see the pan-handler as a burden on society or as an opportunity for God? That, too, depends on the state of your heart.

The state of your heart dictates whether you harbor a grudge or give grace, seek self-pity or seek Christ, drink human misery or taste God's mercy.

No wonder, then, the wise man begs: "Above all guard your heart for it is the source of all life" (Prov. 4:23). David's prayer should become ours: "Create in me a pure heart, O God" (Ps. 51:10), because "Those who have pure hearts will be blessed and they shall see God" (Matt. 5:8).

Roger Lemke is pastor of Fishers of Men Lutheran Church. The church is at 10360 Stringfellow Road. Call 239-283-1170 for service times and/or additional information.



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