Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Jeremiah 4-6: Ask For the Eternal Paths

Jeremiah 6:16
Amplified Bible (AMP)

16 Thus says the Lord: Stand by the roads and look; and ask for the eternal paths, where the good, old way is; then walk in it, and you will find rest for your souls. But they said, We will not walk in it!

God's chosen people had once again turned away from Him. Their faces had become "harder than rock." (Jeremiah 5:3) A face is symbolic for one's heart. Abba's children had hardened their hearts towards Him. How could this happen?

Idolatry. But something must have been going on inside the hearts of the people before turning away from the God that had proven Himself repeatedly.

I think about our natural bodies. What causes a callus to form on our skin?

According to Medical News Today, "a callus, or callosity, is a section of skin that has become toughened and thick as a result of friction, pressure or irritation."

Now apply that knowledge to the soul. When constant pressure and friction is applied to the soul though trials, tribulations, disappointments and traumas. A callused heart (hardened heart) may result.

I think about Proverbs 4:23 where God is commanding to "keep and guard your heart with all vigilance and above all that you guard, for out of it flow the springs of life."

Guarding our heart should be more important to us than guarding ALL else! It occurs to me that no matter how much we attempt to guard our hearts, we cannot do it apart from His Spirit giving us direction about what guarding actually looks like as we walk through life.

Guarding our heart manifests internally by guarding our thoughts in relation to a person or situation. As a psychiatric nurse, I can tell you that thoughts really do influence our "heart" or more plainly stated, our emotions. Human science has shown that thoughts actually affect the neurochemical balance within the brain. Neurochemical imbalance is a current theory of the origins of mental illness. Emotions are moderated by these powerful brain chemicals, which then affect our behavior. Knowing this is only the first step. Doing requires the power of His Spirit. He is the One Who empowers us to manage our thoughts.

Isaiah 26:3
Amplified Bible (AMP)

3 You will guard him and keep him in perfect and constant peace whose mind [both its inclination and its character] is stayed on You, because he commits himself to You, leans on You, and hopes confidently in You.

The Lord is commanding, "Stand by the roads and look; and ask for the eternal paths, where the good, old way is; then walk in it, and you will find rest for your souls."

But the only way to do that is by maintaining a softened heart, but what if a heart has already been hardened, calloused. THERE IS STILL HOPE!!!

Ezekiel 11:18-20
Amplified Bible (AMP)

18 And when they return there, they shall take away from it all traces of its detestable things and all its abominations (sex impurities and heathen religious practices).

19 And I will give them one heart [a new heart] and I will put a new spirit within them; and I will take the stony [unnaturally hardened] heart out of their flesh, and will give them a heart of flesh [sensitive and responsive to the touch of their God],

20 That they may walk in My statutes and keep My ordinances, and do them. And they shall be My people, and I will be their God.

Yay, God!!!

Holy Spirit, I know You are calling me to "Stand by the roads and look; and ask for the eternal paths, where the good, old way is;" I will walk in it, and I will find rest for my soul. You have showed me Your will for 2014. Soul rest 90% of the time is not what You desire for Your beloved. Lord, I receive Your call to "Go back to the start" where I first fell in love with You. The good, old way, here I come!!!


Laure Covert said...

Beautiful! softened heart that comes from His working on it :) Thanks again for a wonderful post.

Beautiful Grace said...

Laure, you are such a kind and encouraging friend! Thank you!!!