What is your heart’s condition today? We all know that heart condition is a major factor in good health. We must work at keeping our physical hearts in good condition if we want to live active, long lives. But my question is directed at your inner heart’s condition—the real you that we often refer to as our “heart.”
The Bible talks about many different heart conditions, and I want to address a few of them and encourage you to have a spiritual heart checkup.
For example, you need to check and see if you have a hard heart. Proverbs 28:14 says: “Blessed is the one who always trembles before God, but whoever hardens their heart falls into trouble.”
What are the symptoms of a hard heart? Well, have you noticed that you don’t care to read the Word much lately? Have you seen a decline in your desire to pray? Do you find that you don’t care so much about other people and their problems as you used to? Is it difficult for God to get your attention these days and speak to you? If you have some of these symptoms, check it out; you may have a hard heart.
This hard-heart condition can creep up on you. You don’t realize it’s happening until one day you take a look at yourself and see that your love for Jesus has grown cold. You’re in that mediocre state—that lukewarm condition—and it feels like you’re in a desert, all dried up with a crusty, hard heart.
Interestingly, you can have a hard heart and appear to be just fine. You can keep doing all the things you always do—the right things and the good things—so that everybody else thinks you look fine. But underneath, that hard heart robs you of joy. First Corinthians 13 says we can look real good—work miracles, speak like angels, impress all kinds of people—but without love, it amounts to absolutely nothing. A hard heart is a loveless heart.
Have you been doing the right things but without love—love for Jesus or for others? That’s a hard-heart condition. How do you cure it? With water from the Living Well. Just as water softens a desert land and makes it bloom like a garden, the Water of Jesus Christ poured on your heart will soften it up again.
Get back to the basics of loving Jesus. Meditate on what he’s done for you; remember how he’s redeemed you; recite how much you have to be thankful for and how much Jesus loves you. Re-establish those disciplines of consistent daily time in the Word and in prayer. Make knowing Jesus your highest priority. Fall in love with him again. Get back to this first love. That’s the prescription for a hard heart.