Knowing the Heart
Despite the danger facing David (the psalmist), David rejoices in a God that protects, counsels, guides, and instructs. David trusts that he can follow his heart because his heart is set toward the Lord.
One of the greatest gifts I can give myself is the gift of knowing my heart. For David, knowing his heart helped guide him, comfort him, and lead him to victory over his enemies. He was solid with his heart because he knew his heart belonged to God.
Knowing my own heart is sometimes challenging. There is so much going on around me at any moment, the noise can make it difficult to listen to my heart. My decisions are reactive instead of proactive, and I bounce from thing to thing without direction or purpose. But I have been cultivating a practice of knowing my heart. I am intentional about my values, and knowing (and consistently reviewing) my values makes it possible to make informed decisions. When I am solid in my values, I can weigh my decisions against them, and those decisions become easier to make. I have also been working hard to quiet my mind and spirit in the practice of meditation so there is time and space to reflect on my decisions and my direction. To quiet a busy mind is to give breath to an otherwise suffocating process of thought.
Like David, knowing my heart gives my life meaning and purpose, makes my decisions easier to make, and keeps me grounded in my values. How will you cultivate the practice of knowing your heart?
Narrative Lectionary Text: Psalm 16
Protect me, O God, for in you I take refuge.
I say to the Lord, ‘You are my Lord;
I have no good apart from you.’
As for the holy ones in the land, they are the noble,
in whom is all my delight.
Those who choose another god multiply their sorrows;
their drink-offerings of blood I will not pour out
or take their names upon my lips.
The Lord is my chosen portion and my cup;
you hold my lot.
The boundary lines have fallen for me in pleasant places;
I have a goodly heritage.
I bless the Lord who gives me counsel;
in the night also my heart instructs me.
I keep the Lord always before me;
because he is at my right hand, I shall not be moved.
Therefore my heart is glad, and my soul rejoices;
my body also rests secure.
For you do not give me up to Sheol,
or let your faithful one see the Pit.
You show me the path of life.
In your presence there is fullness of joy;
in your right hand are pleasures for evermore.