Softening a Hardened Heart Makes Building God’s Kingdom Easier
God needs our hearts to be full of His love if He is to build His Kingdom in our lifetime. God does this by speaking to us. As Scripture says: “If today you hear God's voice, harden not your hearts.” Scripture challenges us to hear God’s voice wherever we are, and through whatever we are doing-and to do it everyday.
For when we listen to God’s voice urging us to “Love God, and love your neighbor as yourself,” it softens our heart to see more clearly what God’s mission is and how we can help accomplish it.
However, life situations often tune out God’s voice. When this happens, our hearts become hardened by life’s challenges. For instance, Roger is a man with deeply embedded anger which easily dims God’s gentle voice. Thelma has long held resentments and hurts that block her from listening to Jesus' words of love and mercy. For, if we live isolated, like Roger and Thelma, we need Jesus' grace to melt our hearts to allow love to flow once again.
Hearts also become hardened, because of sin. Often this sinfulness blocks God’s voice telling us what He needs from us. When it does, our ability to spread God’s love and build His kingdom suddenly stops. Only with God’s love, freely given and so easily shared, is our sin tainted hardened heart no longer "trapped."
Thank the Lord, we have a persistent God. He sends His Son Jesus, who continually calls us forward with these words: “Follow me!” And when we respond and walk with Him, His grace heals us. Soon we become better hearers and doers of His Word building God’s kingdom though our restored gifts and softened hearts.
Following Jesus, we recognize more vividly how connected daily living and our faith are. With Jesus’ command to Be Compassionate, we are aware of the struggle of those who walk with us. We clearly see their needs and how we can respond. As we do, our hardened heart moves from being self-centered to the softened heart of other-centered. This newly revived heart wants only to love everyone met along our way.
When a renewed heart beats to the rhythm of God’s love, Jesus moves closer to fulfilling His mission through us and our world appears a brighter place!
If today you hear God's voice, harden not your heart!