Wednesday, January 3

Purifying the Heart

Come near to God and he will come near to you. Wash you hands, you sinners, and purify your hearts you double-minded. --James 4:8 (NIV)

My husband and I like starting the week with a neat and clean home. We straighten up the clutter that tends to accumulate from our ongoing projects, creating peaceful order from chaos. When everything is neatly in place, we are able to see and appreciate our living space.

What I like best about this time of year is the excitement that builds in my mind as I anticipate all the things I will see and do in the new year. I'm not talking just about New Year's resolutions, the goals I set for myself; I'm talking about the things that will shape who I am in Christ.

In order to be free to follow God down whatever path he has marked out for me, I need to clean up the clutter that gets in my way. Like starting the week with a clean home, I must begin each day with a clean heart. This involves coming near to God, standing at the foot of his throne in humble prayer. The process of purifying my heart in such a way isn't always easy. There are always plenty of things competing for my attention.

Without God I am helpless and useless. Furthermore, unless my heart is purified, it is useless because it will have no room in my life for the things God wants to teach me. When I clear out the clutter I can see more clearly the living space that God has designed for me--the richness and fullness of his glory.

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