“The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it?” Jeremiah 17:9-10
It is ten o’clock at night and quiet muffles our house. A clock strike upstairs, the tick of another on the study wall, and through the open slider filters an occasional nightsound of animal and of wind. Other than that, I hear nothing. The day is done and when I finish here I will go to bed and to sleep.
But first, this heart business. Intermittently through this day, I’ve thought of my heart. My heart. Not the thumping one set behind bone and skin. The other one. The invisible one. The one that counts. Uhmm…the one God notices.
It’s a wicked thing. Yours…mine…everyone’s. Wicked. Very wicked. Jeremiah used the term “desperately wicked.”
It’s deceitful, too. Tricky, sneaky, and twisted. Quite often my heart flings up a dark cloak so that it can get on with its deceit and wickedness. It conceals things and seeks out dark corners and black crevices. That’s my heart I’m talking about…and your heart.
Frustrated no doubt at the squirminess and inkiness of his heart, Jeremiah tosses out the question: “Who can know it?”
Who can know it, indeed? I try to know my heart, try to penetrate its secret and less than stellar ways. I probe and dig around, but to be honest, sometimes I’m not happy with what I find, and I know Jeremiah was onto something when he proclaims…”it’s a wicked, unknowable thing…this heart.”
It’s easy for me to note the oozing sin and wild imperfections in the chamber of another’s heart. With superior ability I seem capable of discerning erratic beats and flawed function in that beating organ of another’s, but of my own, I do not know.
God Himself speaks to the question…that question of the ages: Who can know the heart? Distinctly and forcefully, He announces what is at once frightening and comforting, “I the LORD search the heart, I try the reins…”
With His infinite wisdom and unfathomable resources, God searches our hearts. He pulls up issues, delves into problems, reveals dirty angles and dusty rooms, finds secret chambers and opens closed off places.
It’s nearly eleven now and quiet here. A good time and a good place to submit to God as He thoroughly searches out my heart and tries my reins. Think I’ll close with some beautiful words that David prayed, kind of let God know how I feel about this heart business.
“Create in me a clean heart, O God, And renew a right spirit within me.” Ps 51:10
And you? How’s your heart? Have you let God do any searching in there lately? Any reins tried?
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