Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Chad's Example - The Heart Revealed

Today I visited an elderly friend in the hospital who had a stroke last night. The moment I walked in, Chad let out a holler and gave a big smile... the kind I've come to expect and enjoy from him every time we meet. It's amazing, though he is confused as a result of the stroke, his heart remains in the sweet state in which he had cultivated it in the presence of our loving and trustworthy God. As I drove away from the hospital, I was praying and reflecting on that... on how, as we age and frequenly lose some or even much of our mental capacity, what is left is the essence of who we are in our heart. When some people lose their ability to "control" their behavior, their hearts are revealed as fearful, selfish, or angry. For others like Chad, however, their essence is an unrefined sweetness that comes from years of nurturing a heart of love for God and for others.

I thought this was a powerful testimony worth receiving as a community. Chad is an example of a cultivated heart. How are we each cultivating our hearts these days? One day, all our mechanisms of "self-control" will weaken or leave us all-together and our raw, unbridled heart will be on display. What will we look like in that hour? I hope you are cultivating hearts of active love, passionate obedience, and humble servitude. The ability to fake Christianity only lasts so long; but an authentic, lived-out relationship with Jesus is truly a treasure that cannot rust.

"Watch over your heart with all diligence, for from it flows the springs of life" (Proverbs 4:23).

1 comment:

John Lynch said...

My friend, Chad passed away just a week ago. His memorial service was a continuing testimony of his life-lived-well and his consequential preparedness to go home. Even in death, Chad's life speaks. May we all be so effective. And may those we leave behind tell our stories and the grander story their all based on... that of Jesus Christ.