Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Jeremiah 17:9-10 -- On Hearts and Non-Fiction

"The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it?
I the Lord search the heart, I try the reins, even to give every man according to his ways, and according to the fruit of his doings."Jeremiah 17:9-10

Our society is really into the heart.  We watch movies where people are seemingly unable to overrule the judgement of their own hearts, even if they are going to ruin their lives, end up in hell, lose their souls and turn into vampires, etc. :)  And despite our affection for the idea of perfect, unchosen romance or the idea that our desires can't lead us astray and will always end up as the best choice, perhaps it does us a disservice to think that these fictional ideals hold up in real life.  One of the biggest lies we tell ourselves is that our hearts are a good guide, and that we should trust them above all else.
The Lord asks us to come before him with a broken heart.  Alma talks about "the mighty change of heart."  Ezekiel talks about replacing our stony hearts with new hearts.  The whole idea of being baptized and born again is the idea of coming to God and allowing him to change us into new creatures... including our hearts, which, despite the media hype, aren't all that great at making good decisions.
Still, the idea of being able to trust our hearts is compelling.  We don't want to take the Vulcan "pure logic" path.  We want that unity between thought and emotion.  By definition, we want what we desire.  ... And that trust and that unity are, in fact possible.  But to get that unity we have to do one of two things.  We either have to change our minds, or we have to change our hearts.  The only one that leads to a happy ending *outside* the movie theatre is to change our hearts.  Once we have dedicated our hearts to God, then we can be united, heart and mind, to learning from him and reaching our potential.  Eventually, we can get to the point where we don't even desire sin anymore; we just want to help and lift and to choose the good.  I'm not trying to sell you another media lie.  It takes a lot of work to get to that point, and a lot of hard choices.  But God is offering real miracles, not fictional ones.  Today, let's follow God rather than our hearts when they differ, and get on the path to the non-fictional happy ending.

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