Do you realize how much it matters for your heart to actually be engaged with your journey?
MARCH 16, 2022
Matt Heard: Do you realize how much it matters for your heart to actually be engaged with your journey? Let’s talk about it, on Key Life.
This is Key Life. We’re here to let you know that because of what Jesus has done, God will never be angry at you again. Matt Heard is a speaker, teacher, writer, pastor, coach and the founder and principal of a ministry called Thrive. He’s been teaching this all this week.
Matt Heard: Thank you Matthew. So, how’s your heart doing today? We’re spending this week together talking about how and why your heart matters so much, much more than most of us realize. And we’re unpacking Proverbs 4 verse 23.
Above all else, guard your heart, for it’s the wellspring of life.
Your heart matters, supremely. It’s an incredible importance. And it’s not just emotion as we’ve already talked about it. It’s the core, it’s the essence of who we are. It’s like the hub of a propeller, the three blades, mind, emotions and will, all in sync. And it means that we’re thinking deeply and we’re feeling authentically and we’re acting intentionally. As human beings, yes, but especially as followers of Jesus. So, today what we want to talk about is what enables us to actually engage with our journey. Instead of being a spectator, being a participant. What’s it look like for me to engage with strength and authenticity and passion and love and awareness and fulfillment. What does that look like? And to help us out, want to bring in Blaise Pascal, the French mathematician and philosopher and Tim Allen, the comedian. Lenardo DaVinci, the amazing artist and thinker and scientists. It sounds like a joke,doesn’t it? Pascal, Tim Allen and DaVinci walked into an bar, but actually they’re not in a bar they’re in their own time, but hear what each of them said at one point in their journey, Blaise Pascal.
So, we never really live, but we hope to live. And as we’re always preparing to be happy. It’s inevitable, we should never be so.
Hmm. About Tim Allen, he said.
I look at it this way. How much of the day are you awake? You think I’ve got to get that dry cleaning. I’ve got to get this going and this and this and this and all of a sudden it’s dinner time. And then there’s a moment of connection with your spouse or your friends. And then you read and go to bed. You wake up and then it’s the same all over. You’re awake, but you’re not living. You’re not experiencing.
And then Leonardo da Vinci.
The average human looks without seeing, listens without hearing, touches without feeling, eats without tasting, moves without physical awareness, inhales without awareness of odour or fragrance, and talks without thinking.
You see what’s going on there? We’re not actually engaging. And Jesus tells us what the problem is in Matthew chapter 13, verse 13, he says.
Though seeing they do not see, though hearing they do not hear or understand. In them is fulfilled the prophecy of Isaiah, for this people’s heart has become calloused. And they hardly hear with their ears and they’ve closed their eyes. Otherwise they might see with their eyes and hear with their ears and understand with their hearts and turn, and I would heal them.
The issue is having a calloused heart, Jesus says. And if I engage my heart, it means I’ll be engaging with my journey. Another way that I understand the role that my heart plays is, I bring up in my mind, another archaeological artifact called a turntable. Archaeologists have discovered a few of these. Remember those? Remember how it works. You’ve got a vinyl LP, an album and you put that on a turntable and it’s spinning around and then a diamond needle on an arm swings over and lowers. And if you grew up with turntables, you remember the sound I’m talking about. It’s a tiny pop. And it’s the sound of engagement, where that needle comes in contact with the album. The album is there, but you’d never knew what was on the album until that needle engaged. Well, my life, your life, everybody’s life is spinning continually. It’s going day in, day out. But I think what Pascal and Allen and da Vinci are talking about is we never lower the arm of that needle and let it come in contact with the album. My heart basically is the needle on my turntable. T.S. Eliot, the amazing poet from last century once wrote.
We had the experience, but missed the meaning.
So, the stuff happens in all of our lives. The question is, are we paying attention or are we missing the significance, are we missing the meaning of it? So, if I’m going to engage my heart, it means I’ll be engaging with my life and with the life of the gospel. So, you might be asking at this point, so, alright, what about an unbeliever? It could be that you’re not yet a follower of Christ and you’re wondering, is there any difference, can an unbeliever engage their heart or you are a follower of Jesus, but you’re saying, well, what’s the difference between a believer and an unbeliever, engaging their heart. Go back to a passage we’ve looked at a couple of times. Romans chapter 10, verses 9 and 10.
If you confess with your mouth, Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you’ll be saved. For it’s with your heart, that you believe and are justified.
So, that belief has everything to do with my heart. Now, layer on to that II Peter, what he wrote in what we know is chapter one, verse 19 of his epistle, he says.
And we have the word of the prophets made more certain, and you will do well to pay attention to it. As to a light shining in a dark place until the day dawns and the morning star rises in your hearts.
So, when I believe, on a heart level. He’s saying there’s like a morning star rises in my heart and illuminates something. What does it eliminate? Paul talks about it in II Corinthians chapter four, verse 6, he says.
For God who said, let light shine out of darkness.
He made his light shine in our hearts to give us the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Christ. So, when I come to Christ, something happens to my heart. A morning star rises, I become illuminated regarding what my journey actually is about. And so, there’s a transformation that takes place and Ezekiel, the prophet talks about it, chapter 36, verse 26, God says.
I’ll give you a new heart and I’ll put a new spirit in you. I’ll remove from you your heart of stone and give you a heart of flesh.
So, my heart changes, when I come to Christ. So, go back to that image that you’ve got of the needle of the turntable lowering down on to the album, that can happen with a believer or an unbeliever, but something different takes place, when a believer actually engages. When I was a kid, a buddy of mine and I took up a turntable, an old rickety one, and we started experimenting around with the needles. We got some tiny little nails to try to see if we could attach those to that turntable arm and see if we could get a sound out. And there are a couple of them. We got a little sound, but it sounded awful, but at least it was sound. And there’s an amazing gift that I have as a follower of Jesus. The Holy Spirit has transformed my heart, but will I engage it, in my journey? I think of four different categories of people. You’ve got the two categories that are unbelievers and two that are believers. So, first one is an unbelieving person who has an unengaged heart, they’re not lowering that needle onto the turntable of their journey, they just go through the motions, get up, have some coffee, watch the news or listen to a particular podcast, go to work, come home, eat dinner, take out the garbage, watch a TV show or movie and go to bed, next morning and do the same thing over and over and over, not engaging. But how about an unbeliever, who has an engaged heart? They’re actually engaging with the ebbs and flows of their life. Category three is a believer, who has a new heart, but it’s not engaged. It’s a sensitive heart. It’s a needle, not a nail, so to speak, but they’re not benefiting from having an engaged heart. The fourth category is somebody who’s a believer and who has an engaged heart. They’re the people that the Scriptures are talking about. They’ve got a new heart that’s equipped in some amazing ways, where they’ve been restored into the original purpose that they’re made for. And they’re actually engaging in their journey. And a sidebar, I think a lot of times believers who are engaging their heart are more comfortable with unbelievers, who are engaging their heart, than they are with believers who are living their lives without engaging their hearts. And they feel guilty about it. And don’t feel guilty, just continue to unpack the gospel in those contexts. But it’s when that needle lowers and I start seeing not just what’s happening in my journey, but I start engaging with the meaning behind those events. But all of a sudden, I start hearing some music that I wasn’t hearing before, remember Uncle Andrew in C.S. Lewis’ The Magician’s Nephew. He refused to hear the music. He refused to hear the singing. So, I hear the singing, but I also want to see the music of my life expressed on a daily basis. Oliver Wendell Holmes, sadly reflected one time.
Alas for those that never sing, but die with all their music in them.
I hope today that you engage with your journey, the highs and the lows, and do both in light of the hope and the guidance of the gospel. And let the Holy Spirit inhabit your heart, where you’re setting apart, Jesus is Lord in your heart. And as a result in the good stuff and the difficult stuff, I hope you thrive today.
Thank you Matt. Again, that was our friend. Matt Heard, continuing to teach us about the significance of our hearts. And remember, you can check out more from Matt at ThriveFullyAlive.com. One more concluding day of teaching tomorrow. You do not want to miss that. By the way, if you missed any of this week’s broadcast format, this is a great time to catch up on those episodes at KeyLife.org we have transcripts for each episode of Key Life. Each one is edited by hand to assist in your study of the Bible. Also at KeyLife.org you’ll find encouraging life-giving articles from Steve and all of your favorite Key Life voices, plus links to our weekly e-mail, which we call Key Life Connection. And even information about our brand new app exclusive podcast call Simply Sermons. And all of it is still free, thanks to the generous support of listeners, like you. If you’d like to donate, just call 1-800-KEY-LIFE. That’s 1-800-539-5433. Or you can mail your donation to
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