As Valentine’s Day approaches, how can I not think about or write about the heart? In fact, the Valentine I gave my lovely wife back in 1961 when we were 10 year-old, elementary school sweethearts will adorn our refrigerator once again this year. But, while Valentine’s cards and chocolate hearts are nice, this year I want to write about a different kind of heart – the heart that matters most.
In Max Lucado’s book Just Like Jesus he writes the words, “God loves you just the way you are, but he refuses to leave you that way. He wants you to be…Just Like Jesus.” In the book he goes on to explain that if we were to ever have any chance of being ‘just like Jesus,’ we would need to have a heart just like Jesus. So what was Jesus’ heart like?
From everything we read and study in the Bible, we know that Jesus had an honest heart (Ephesians 4:25). We also know that Jesus had a compassionate kind, humble and forgiving heart (Colossians 3:12-13). His heart was pure, it was hope-filled and enduring, and maybe as much as anything, it was focused – Focused on His love for God.
Considering everything that Jesus was and is as our Lord and Savior, how can we ever fulfill His desires for us? Can we ever truly have a heart like Jesus? I doubt it. We will continue to fail throughout our lives and we will never be as pure, as compassionate or as forgiving as Jesus was because we are human and of the flesh. But, if we cannot truly have a heart like Jesus, what if there was one simple instruction Jesus could give us to bring us closer to having this kind of miraculous transplant? What might it be?
Certainly there is the Great Commandment (Mark 12:29-31) which states clearly how we are to treat others and the Great Commission (Matthew 28:19-20) which tells us what we are to do as we go forward in our lives. But, as a possible life-changing instruction, what if Jesus just said to us, “Every day, go forth and be a faithful steward.”
In the simplest of terms, being a faithful steward defines how God wants each of us to live our lives. After all, when we make the conscious decision to become faithful stewards, the living presence of Jesus Christ becomes more real than ever before in our lives. Making this decision transforms who we are, touching every aspect of everything we do. How we treat other people, how we spend our time, how we manage our health, how we teach our children, how we manage our resources; being a faithful steward is all about being a trusted asset manager in God’s world! After all, everything we have in this life is His. It is His world, not ours! We are only here for a short time and when we leave this world, we will leave with nothing.
Being that faithful steward EVERY day has a lot to do with the kind of person we become and yes, the kind of heart we have. God gives to us abundantly. We, too, must give of ourselves, our time, our talents and our treasures in similar fashion. As faithful stewards living in God’s world, we need to give from our hearts. And when we truly commit ourselves to doing this, to being that faithful steward, we will put ourselves on a path to having a heart like Jesus. What could be better than that?