I do not always know my own heart, but God knows my heart. No matter what I say or what I do, God looks into my heart to see who I really am. I do not often look into my heart to truly know what is there, but it is true that God knows the intent of my heart. That can be disconcerting.
I have thought a great deal about caring for my heart, about filling it with purity and all things good. But before I can change anything, I have to look into my heart and honestly see what is there. I have to honestly become aware of what is in my heart.
The Bible tells us that those who are pure in heart are blessed. But it’s not that easy to make sure that our hearts are pure. There are so many assaults around us, things we see and experience every day. Violence, racism, hatred, disrespect, the abuse of children, disease, hunger, general meanness . . . Watching that, even from afar, all hurts the heart. Unfortunately, we cannot control what we are exposed to every day, and we don’t have the ability to make the world a kind and gentle place.
That’s what makes it so important that we reflect on things of the heart. Give thanks for our heart relationships. Meditate on all that makes for a pure heart. Love freely and lavishly, with all our hearts. The Bible says, “Watch over your heart with all diligence, for from it flow the springs of life.” – Proverbs 4:23 NASB
Engaging in this magnificent thing we call nature will make an enormous difference in caring for our hearts. John Muir describes it so eloquently:
This grand show is eternal. It is always sunrise somewhere; the dew is never all dried at once; a shower is forever falling; vapor ever rising. Eternal sunrise, eternal sunset, eternal dawn and gloaming, on seas and continents and islands, each in its turn, as the round earth rolls.
“John of the Mountains: The Unpublished Journals of John Muir,” (1938).
So I plan on coming up with ways of enjoying the eternal “grand show” – maybe watching a sunset, or watching the wind blow through the leaves of a tree, or praying, or meditating, or watching a gentle Autumn rain, or walking through a forest. I plan on doing whatever it takes to help me watch over my heart with all diligence. I plan to awaken to new possibilities.
Carl Jung wrote this: “Your vision will become clear only when you look into your heart. Who looks outside, dreams. Who looks inside, awakens.”