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Purify your Heart

Once, an old woman sat in her home and watched her neighbors with a critical eye. She complained that her neighbor's car was always dirty. She complained that the neighbor's kids wore dirty clothes, and their house was so dirty it needed a new coat of paint.

One day she was telling her daughter about these dirty people. Her daughter got up, walked over to the window, and noticed that the window itself was filthy. So she cleaned the window for her mother, and it became clear that the neighbor's house, car, and kids were clean.

The problem was her dirty window! Our hearts can be just like that dirty window. If they aren't cleaned then we can't see how God wants us to see. We need to allow God to clean, purify, our heart.

Jesus said something that will help us purify our hearts if we take it to heart.

Matthew 7:4–5 (NLT)

4 How can you think of saying to your friend, 'Let me help you get rid of that speck in your eye,' when you can't see past the log in your own eye?

5 Hypocrite! First get rid of the log in your own eye; then you will see well enough to deal with the speck in your friend's eye.

When the Bible uses the word heart, it refers to our innermost being. It is more than just thoughts; it also refers to our emotions and attitudes.

To have a pure heart, we must be in alignment with the heart of God.

Instead of being a critical person, judging, and weighing the merits of other people, we need to see them as God sees them - with love with compassion.

When you have a heart of love for someone, then their actions will not determine how you view them because, like God, you see past their actions to who they are in Christ. That's called grace.

If our hearts are pure towards others, then bitterness and resentment have no place in our relationships.

Having pure thoughts means that we stand guard against any bitterness. It's the will of God that none of His children live in bitterness. He desires that we have pure hearts towards each other.

Hebrews 12:15 (CEV)

15 Make sure that no one misses out on God's wonderful kindness. Don't let anyone become bitter and cause trouble for the rest of you.

Too often, people open up the door to strife because they have been mistreated and think they have a right to retaliate.

When we are treated badly, our natural reaction is to respond in the same way. But when our hearts are pure, aligned with God's will, we know that God takes care of us.

Romans 12:19 (CEV)

19 Dear friends, don't try to get even. Let God take revenge. In the Scriptures the Lord says, "I am the one to take revenge and pay them back."

The consequence of having a heart that has a root of bitterness or resentment is that it will blossom into pain for both you and the person who's the target of your bitterness or resentment.

Emotions must be filtered through God's Word. If you are not careful, unchecked emotions may lead to sin.

For example, how do you deal with the emotion of anger?

James 1:20 CEV

20 If you are angry, you cannot do any of the good things that God wants done.

Anger, bitterness, self-preservation, resentment, or any un-forgiveness in our hearts will stop us from accomplishing God's perfect will in our life.

You might say, but you don't understand what I've been through. I can't forgive. I can't let it go. It's just too hard. I'd say to you that you've got to let it go because you can't live your life as God intended if your heart is holding on to what is un-pure.

Here's one of my life mottos: Forgive, Forget, and Move on!

You don't have to stay in a harmful or abusive situation, but with God's help, you can forgive, forget, and move on. It takes effort. When your heart is in alignment with the will of God, it is possible to have a pure heart, a heart full of love and compassion for everyone, even our enemies.

A pure heart desires that everyone will be set free from the bondage of a life without the freedom of Christ.


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