Can God open the heart of a person so he or she can acknowledge Jesus as the Christ, the Son of the living God, the Messiah, the Lord and Savior of mankind?
Today's Devotional Scripture
"[I pray] that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give to you a spirit of )wisdom and of revelation in the knowledge of Him. I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened, so that you will know what is the hope of His calling, what are the riches of the glory of His inheritance in the saints, and what is the surpassing greatness of His power toward us who believe." (Ephesians 1:17-19)
God Can Open Hearts
Yes, God can open the heart of an individual to accept Jesus as his or her personal Lord and Savior and it is a matter of the heart. I went back and looked at the previous six devotional articles geared to prepare us for Easter and found 10 references to “heart“, “hearts” or “heartfelt.”
Four references come from The Bible and include passages like Psalm 139:23-24, Psalm 17:3-4 and 1 Peter 3:14-18 from Day #3‘s devotional and Proverbs 3:2 in Day #4’s devotional article. Two references to heart appear in the prayers and the remaining four come from my commentaries.
Jesus’ greatest commandment requires that we love the Lord our God with all of our heart, soul, strength and mind. I took the 2011 edition of the New International Version (NIV) and searched for how frequently these four words appear in The Bible. Here are the results:
- Heart - 508 times
- Soul - 95
- Strengh - 232
- Mind -120
This brief snapshot of scripture tells me that God first and foremost values and speaks to the heart of a person. His desire is to establish a personal relationship with everyone.
For example, the phrase “My children” is used 454 times in the 2011 NIV translation of The Bible. Jesus refers to God as “Father” 225 times in the Gospels. There are 78 references in the Gospels to Jesus as the “Son of Man” (His favorite reference to who He was) and 22 times where He is called the “Son of God.”
These numbers suggest that Jesus put emphasis on having a personal, heartfelt relationship with Him and God the Father. He want so far as explaining and establishing a third relationship - one with the Holy Spirit - that is only available to those who accept Jesus as Lord and Savior.
In my life, I had to thoroughly examine The Bible before I made a life-changing decision to dedicate my life to Christ . But at the crucial moment of decision, it was not my mind that convinced me to do it. It was my heart and soul that surrendered to Jesus and His authority.
Heavenly Father, thank You that You continually reveal more of Yourself to me. It‘s amazing that I am actually part of Jesus‘ inheritance. Please open the eyes of my heart so that I can understand Your calling on my life. Help me to make more room for You in my heart so I can fulfill your calling. Thank You for the surpassing greatness of Your power that dwells within me. May my heartfelt faith bring honor to the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. In Jesus' name. Amen.