Act As If, until "If" Becomes "Is"
The psalmist knows that what God desires is not empty actions, but a heart transformed by the will of a loving God. But how do we transform our hearts?
Honestly, I think the simplest way to change my heart is to "act as if." By changing my behaviors, often I find my heart and mind change along with them. When I'm feeling ungrateful, I can change my heart by writing thank-you notes; thanking others for their work, their words, their prayers; thanking God for my life. By acting as if I'm grateful, I soon find that I am actually grateful. When I'm feeling fearful, I can change my heart by making a phone call I've been dreading, giving until it hurts a little, being the first to break the silence with an apology. By acting as if I'm brave, I soon find that I am actually fearless.
Where do I find the wisdom and strength to change my behaviors and my heart? I turn to the one who created wisdom and strength. Where do you?
Narrative Lectionary Text: Proverbs 21:1-5
The king’s heart is a stream of water in the hand of the Lord;
he turns it wherever he will.
All deeds are right in the sight of the doer,
but the Lord weighs the heart.
To do righteousness and justice
is more acceptable to the Lord than sacrifice.
Haughty eyes and a proud heart—
the lamp of the wicked—are sin.
The plans of the diligent lead surely to abundance,
but everyone who is hasty comes only to want.