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Here Is Why God Wants Your WHOLE Heart


The Book of Judges is an Old Testament book. Perhaps, you’re not overly familiar with its teachings and haven't heard it taught very often. Nonetheless, it is a book filled with many truths. It can teach us many lessons from the lives of others, specifically, how to live right and how to avoid making wrong decisions. The overall context of the book of Judges is, not surprisingly, all about “wise judgment” in life, religion, and politics. Moreover, Hebrew judges, at the time of this ancient writing, were the final authority for the religious and political governance of the nation of Israel. Their job was to counsel their country towards wisdom and godliness – to help them collectively KEEP THEIR HEARTS RIGHT!


Samson was one of these judges. This historical reality might surprise you, especially if you’ve been following our Meaningful Connection series closely.


Samson was a powerful man and effective warrior, but he made many foolish choices and NEVER established a meaningful relationship with God -- or anyone else for that matter. He lacked wisdom and godliness. It’s easy to conclude Samson’s heart was not right. This reality, despite God having a meaningful life planned for Samson!


Samson arrived when his nation was under bondage to another nation, Philistia. In fact, for 40 years, the Philistines had domineered the Israelites. But God intended for Samson to be a means of deliverance for his people. He was ordained to help create change and make things better in his society and for his culture. But after twenty years of being a judge, Samson had done nothing for anyone other than himself. You could sum up Samson’s leadership in one sentence, “a judge with no judgment.”


WHY?


Because Samson was a man who struggled with having the right heart, he missed the essence of the greatest command from God.


“You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind. This is the first and great commandment” (Matthew 22:37–38 NKJV).


Here’s why God wants your heart – all of it. Because your heart ultimately determines the course your life will take and the issues you will battle. If God has your heart, your whole heart, your life will be vastly different than if He does not, because the issues you face, and the path you are on will be different. The sooner you give Him your whole heart the better:


“Keep your heart with all diligence, For out of it spring the issues of life” (Proverbs 4:23 NKJV).


“Guard your heart above all else, for it determines the course of your life” (Proverbs 4:23 NLT).


Tim Keller, a man considered to be very wise in modern-day Christianity, provided commentary on that verse in this way with a tweet (July 27th, 2013):


“What the heart trusts, the mind justifies, the emotions desire, and the will carries out. Everything follows the heart.” (1)


The question is does God have your heart?


And, if so, how much of your heart does He have?


The heart is a very difficult place to conquer and surrender. Maybe you're not sure if you’ve given your whole heart to God or if you're holding a piece back from Him. Take a good look at the path you are on and the issues you’re facing in life, this may offer you some insight.


The poem, Invictus, has been read and quoted by Nelson Mandela, Winston Churchill, the Oklahoma City Bomber Timothy McVeigh, and all through literature and film. It echoes the pride of Samson and confidence he finds in looking to himself rather than to God. (2)


“Out of the night that covers me, Black as the Pit from pole to pole,

I thank whatever gods may be For my unconquerable soul.

In the fell clutch of circumstance I have not winced nor cried aloud.

Under the bludgeonings of chance My head is bloody, but unbowed.

Beyond this place of wrath and tears Looms but the Horror of the shade,

And yet the menace of the years Finds, and shall find, me unafraid.

It matters not how strait the gate, How charged with punishments the scroll,

I am the master of my fate: I am the captain of my soul. (3)

In Latin, the term Invictus means unconquered. This poem is an ode to men and women, like Samson, who refused to be conquered specifically in their hearts and souls. And as motivational as it might sound, it is a declaration that we all must avoid making because the one thing God wants from us above all else is our hearts! It’s the one place we must be willing to allow God to conquer us! If we refuse, the unconquerable becomes unnecessarily conquered.

Again, God wants your heart! He wants to conquer and own it. He wants to fill the whole space with not just his power but his presence!

So, the question you must answer: Have I given God my WHOLE heart?

Have you given Him your life, your ambitions, your plan, your vision, your gifts, and your talents… Have you given Him all of you?

Samson never arrived at this level of surrender -- this place of meaningful connection with God. The result: an unconquerable man was conquered by the things of this world. Samson was a man of incredible strength, but his greatest weakness was his inability to surrender to God, and it caused him to lose the meaningful life God had planned for him.

Don’t allow this to be your greatest weakness too. You can choose to surrender your whole heart to God. When you allow this to happen, you step into a truly meaningful relationship with God!

This change may be the course correction your life so desperately needs.

I invite you to view this message in its entirety at this link: https://youtu.be/c_DPzy71VBc



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1) Timothy Keller (@timkellernyc) Twitter post, July 27, 2013, https://twitter.com/timkellernyc/status/361154443921735680?lang=en.

2) Anders and Phillips, Holman Old Testament Commentary, 228.

3) William Ernest Henley, “Invictus”, Poetry Foundation, https://www.poetryfoundation.org/poems/51642/invictus.





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