This devotional appeared first on Susan Cady’s blog, Get Real!
We continue our study of Psalm 86:11, as we seek to prepare our hearts and homes in order to celebrate what’s truly important this Christmas season. (Download/Print the study guide, including family activities and Preparing Our Home ideas)
… unite my heart to fear your name. —Psalm 86:11b
What does it mean to have an undivided heart?
unite – yahad (H3161) – to be or become one, be joined, to be united. It refers to entering into the plan or thinking of a group, uniting with them. It is used figuratively of the psalmist’s desire for the Lord to unite his heart to walk in God’s ways and to fear him (Ps 86:11).
Let’s begin in Jeremiah 32:38-40:
And they shall be my people, and I will be their God. I will give them one heart and one way, that they may fear me forever, for their own good and the good of their children after them. I will make with them an everlasting covenant, that I will not turn away from doing good to them. —Jeremiah 32:38-40
How do these verses relate to having an undivided heart?
One Way: Jesus is the one way. Jesus unites us to the Father, restoring the relationship that was broken by sin. He has made an everlasting covenant with us. He will never leave or forsake us. We are completely secure in Christ.
One Heart: Jesus provides the way for us to have a heart that is one with the Father — an undivided heart.
What tends to divide and distract your heart? Write down at least one thing that tends to distract from your time in the Word, in prayer and being in God’s presence.
How do we cultivate an undivided heart? What are some of the habits of those who desire to have a heart that is one with the Father? We’ll examine three heart habits over the next two weeks.
Read through each of the definitions and Scriptures for each of the heart habits. Just allow the Word of God to wash over your heart, soul, mind and spirit. Be renewed in truth today!
seek – zeteo (G2212) to find out by thinking, meditating, reasoning; to seek, to crave.
seek – darash (H1875) to tread or frequent; to resort to; usually to follow (for pursuit or search); by implication, to seek or ask; specifically to worship.
Practices of a Seeking Heart:
- Mark 12:30 – And you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.
- Colossians 3:1-3 -If then you have been raised with Christ, seek the things that are above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things that are above, not on things that are on earth. For you have died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God.
- Psalm 51:10 – Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a right spirit within me.
- 1 Chronicles 16:11 – Seek the Lord and his strength; seek his presence continually.
- Matthew 6:33 – But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.
- Psalm 119:10-11 – With my whole heart I seek you; let me not wander from your commandments! I have stored up your word in my heart, that I might not sin against you.
Prayers of a Seeking Heart:
- Psalm 19:14 – Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in your sight, O Lord, my rock and my redeemer.
- Psalm 119:36-37 – Turn my heart toward your statutes and not toward selfish gain. Turn my eyes away from worthless things; preserve my life according to your word. (NIV)
- Psalm 27:8 – You have said, “Seek my face.” My heart says to you,“Your face, Lord, do I seek.”
Promises for a Seeking Heart:
- Psalm 34:10 – The young lions suffer want and hunger; but those who seek the Lord lack no good thing.
When Colossians speaks of a life “hidden with Christ” it refers to one that rests in Jesus. It is finding our identity in who He says we are instead of seeking to impress others. It is finding our worth and significance in Him rather than other people or the things of this world. What are you seeking? What do you find yourself pursuing or craving to find satisfaction and significance? What do you resort to in times of need? Are you living out each day as one whose life is “hidden with Christ”?
Contemplate His Greatness! Find an area in your home where you can create a Contemplate His Greatness! board. It could be a bulletin board, chalkboard, dry erase board, notebook —any place that is prominent and accessible on a daily basis. Have each family member make a point to record daily an aspect of God’s greatness (His character and ways) that He reveals to you through His Word.
Christmas Reading Corner Years ago my dad made us a wooden sleigh and my parents filled it with goodies for our family. Every year I pull that sleigh out and place it near the fireplace in the family room and fill it with Christmas books and devotions I’ve collected over the years. When my children were still at home, each day we had a quiet hour where they were to get somewhere, be still and quiet and read. Most often everyone chose the family room where the fire was going and Christmas tree was lit up. Even now as empty nesters I enjoy sitting by the fire, with a cup of hot tea and enjoying the Christmas tree and a good Christmas story. Make your own “Be Still” reading corner this Christmas. You don’t have to have a collection of books. Start with just one and take time to be still each day and enjoy the season.