01.05.16 – Head And Heart

the_head_and_the_heart_blog

“A woman named Lydia, from the city of Thyatira, a seller of purple fabrics, a worshiper of God, was listening; and the Lord opened her heart to respond to the things spoken by Paul.” – Acts 16:14

In 1992, the 6th of October was on a Tuesday. It is a day that will forever be etched upon my heart.  On that warm breezy afternoon while sitting at a picnic table on my High School campus, I surrendered my heart and life to Jesus Christ.  A particular friend of mine sat at the table with me and had just explained the gospel message of Christ one more time. He had been very persistent in sharing the gospel with me throughout the year.  Our first conversation took place in the spring on a hiking trip at a nearby state park. And through it all, this friend patiently prayed that I would eventually trust Jesus Christ as my personal Lord and Savior.  His labor was not in vain; for on that day, God removed the blinders from my eyes and I saw clearly the Gospel of Christ. I saw the severity of my sinfulness and the glory of God’s holiness. In that moment, all the seeds planted in the soil of my heart leading up to that point immediately began to germinate. It was the greatest moment of my life. God softened my heart with the oil of the Holy Spirit, and He enabled me to receive His free gift of salvation. My conversion experience was not my doing, rather God’s doing.  For out of His grace and mercy, He opened my heart to the truth of the gospel, just as He did for Lydia, the first European convert.

My story prior to conversion is not as extravagant as some.  There are those who were down in the valley of despair, a valley which God used for His glory to draw them to the clefts of a personal relationship with Him. Others traveled down the rivers and roads of depression, paths mapped out by our sovereign Lord to bring them to salvation.  But for me, I was a young man raised in church with the head knowledge lacking the heart knowledge. My problem was that I had never made that eighteen inches journey from my head to my heart. Before conversion, I had been a fairly good moral person.  I had even accumulated a large quantity of head knowledge about the things of God because church had become one of the primary threads in my life tapestry. Yet even with my impressive life résumé, I still was not saved.

Finally on October 6, 1992, a light flickered within me, and I saw things clearly.  I understood that even my good moral standards were rubbish in comparison to God’s standard.  I realized that I could never be good enough, wise enough, or even charming enough to obtain salvation for myself.  It was a free gift from God, and it was a gift because it could not be earned or bought.  My eyes were opened to my sinfulness, and my heart was opened to the truths my friend shared with me that day.  I saw the gospel message in a whole new light, a way that I had never seen it before. My cognitive understanding of the gospel had grown into heartfelt sincerity. The truth of the matter is this; I could have never comprehended the truth of the gospel until the Holy Spirit of God turned the light on in my heart.

It is sobering to know that up to that point, all I had was a lot of head knowledge about spiritual matters, but that I did not genuinely have the saving heart knowledge of Christ. But on that day, everything changed. This is not to suggest that everything since that moment in my life has been a bed of roses. Roses have thorns.  There still have been bumps in the road of life. But since that moment there has been an evident change within my heart. I no longer trust in myself to get to heaven, but rather trust in Christ for salvation.  Isn’t the transition from the head to the heart overwhelming?

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18 thoughts on “01.05.16 – Head And Heart

  1. It’s scary to think that someone can go to church their whole life and not know God. We are all Christians, but there’s no guarantee we are saved just by church. We must fully surrender our lives to him.

  2. Going to a Christian school most of us have a good knowledge of Christ and God. We can even live Christian lives, but God looks at the heart. We can’t be in complete harmony with God unless our head and heart are in harmony with each other.

  3. Sometimes it is hard to do what is right in all situations but we must learn to look to God and follow him not just with our hearts but with our minds and trust in him no matter what.

  4. It’s easy to think that just head knowledge and having good morals is ” good enough for God ” I guess you could say . But really we need heart knowledge , we need to understand salvation is a free gift from God. Salvation is not earned but good deeds or what we might know .

  5. Brett is right in that most of us have plenty of knowledge of the gospel from our school. Yet this can make it so much harder to come full circle with our hearts understanding the things in our heads. Many times I have deceived myself in thinking that I have it all figured out, when in reality I can be so lost in my heart and not even know it. It truly is an act of God to open our hearts to knowing and understanding Him.

  6. God’s salvation and grace are beautiful gifts that are given to us. We do not need to just have all “head knowledge” but we also need to have a sincere heart and relationship with Jesus. If we do not have both together, I think we would be missing the point of God.

  7. A lot of times in our lifetime, we are besieged by thoughts against God. We are told that it really isn’t necessary to love God and to live our lives accordingly. These thoughts are based on false philosophy and untrained minds. God has been good to us, and He will only keep on giving us help and love. We were meant to serve a God, because we need something to believe in in our lifetime.

  8. I think going from head knowledge to heart knowledge is one of throat important steps you can take. Knowledge is good but that’s not what will save you. I struggled with this when I was younger a lot. I knew about the truths of the Bible buy I did not believe it until I finally got saved.

  9. First of all, I think your story of salvation, Mr. Martin, is incredible. I know many people who have gone through some absolutely crazy stuff, but it isn’t the “stuff” that matters. The stuff doesn’t phase me. It’s the incredible act of salvation. Reading about someones story of salvation, however long ago or however recent, is really so encouraging and uplifting! I think the head knowledge is the “stuff”. Not because it’s unimportant, but because ITS. NOT. GETTING. US. TO. HEAVEN. Once we truly understand that and ACCEPT that, I think we can truly grow to know God in not only such a grander way, but a much more personal way also.

  10. It is easy to believe that just becouse I go to church every week and go to a Christian school I am a shoo-in for heaven, but that simply isn’t true. I need to actively make myself act in a godly way and practice all that I have been taught.

  11. It’s scary how many people go to church just to please other people. They do Not engage in the message. God knows what we do when no one else is looking. He knows what thoughts Go through our mind. But when you do make that connection of the heart to the mind. You will never be the same

  12. Connecting your head and heart is a matter of understanding that just going through the motions won’t get you right with God. You have to commit to Going deeper in your relationship with Him.

  13. It’s tempting for us to believe we are saved just because we know about God. But salvation and walking the Christian faith is a matter of the heart. We must be able to connect our knowledge to our heart to be able to produce good fruit.

  14. In regards in transition from head to heart, I would like to say that God’s presence can even be seen through reasoning and through faith. It all depends on if a person uses that reasoning and knowledge correctly and as I’ve always said there is a difference between knowledge and wisdom.

  15. It is hard to connect these things from our heads to our hearts. I’ve grown up in church and have learned about the gospel all my life. Sometimes I have to take a step back and reevaluate my life and make sure I am connecting God to my heart.

  16. It’s eye opening when you realize that just because people go to church or to a Christian school, they are not always saved. We need to minister to everyone and examine ourselves. We should engage in talking with and about God more often.

  17. This is a very scary subject. Many people believe that they are going to Heaven simply because they go to church and know a decent amount of theology. It’s sad that so many people are trapped in this state-of-mind. In order to go to Heaven, we must have a personal relationship with Christ.

  18. It’s so common to see, especially in the South, people think they are saved because they said a prayer when they were 10 and go to church. I think a lot of people forget that it’s more than just a prayer it’s a RELATIONSHIP.

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