A Real Change of Heart

How are we dealing with the ups and downs of our life in Christ? As we travel on our faith journey, are we evaluating the life we live from one day to the next? I have often considered how I did at the end of a particular day. Did I do good according to God's will that day or was I being led by my own selfishness, which is against God's will?

Have you found yourself on a part of your faith journey that you felt was going along fine only to have a set of difficult circumstances come into your life and devastate you or someone you love? I'm thinking of things like a personal financial downturn, or the break up of a close relationship, or a serious illness, or the death of a loved one that was unexpected or coming all at once.

When seemingly "bad things" happen to us like those I listed above, we often believe that we might have done something wrong and are getting paid back for our wrongdoing. And if we are honest with ourselves, we have probably thought that mistakenly about somebody else after finding out she or he suffered multiple hardships or one very damaging event that was life changing.

We may have questions about whether we're living the way God wants us to live and wrongly believe that the harsh circumstances in our life are the evidence that God is not happy with us. Have we come to a turning point in our life, needing to make a life changing decision about the direction we will take from here? How should we evaluate our spiritual condition and consider what the hardships in our life mean to us?

God wants us to understand what to do when we know we are on a pathway toward selfish pursuits and away from God. And, we need to differentiate between hard times that come with daily living and the results of living our lives with a hard heart. In this weeks' Bible reading from Luke 13:1-9, Jesus speaks God's truth about human suffering, guilt, wrongdoing, and the need for repentance. He then  told a parable revealing the nature of God's mercy and grace when no evidence of fruitfulness can be found. May we read it with open hearts.

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