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Heart Attack

The importance of the heart

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If I asked you to take your finger and point to yourself, where would you point? Most of us, I imagine, would not point to our heads. That's interesting isn't it? In spite of the great importance of good thinking, we instinctively know that what is most essential about us is not our intellect. We almost never say to someone we love: "I give you all my brain," though we often give them a piece of our mind, don't we? I've never heard anybody say as they devote themselves to a cause: "I hereby dedicate my full bladder to this venture." "I pledge to thee my lungs!" No, when we're talking about that aspect of ourselves that is most central to who we are and what we want to bring to life, we speak of the heart.

In saying this, of course, we don't mean our myocardial muscle—though the amazing pump which powers our physical lives makes a fine analogy for the deeper aspect of our being. When the Bible speaks of the heart, it is talking about the spiritual pump at the center of each of us. As I said last week, your heart is not your feelings, but the fundamental spirit or will that determines what feelings or thoughts you entertain or reject life. It is the set of core convictions and motivations that determine whether you're even listening to me right now!

As Andy Stanley writes, our heart

seeps into every conversation. It dictates every relationship …. We live, parent, lead, relate, romance, confront, react, respond, instruct, manage, problem solve, and love from the heart. Our hearts impact the intensity of our communication. Our hearts have the potential to exaggerate our sensitivities and insensitivities. Every arena of life intersects with what's going on in our hearts. Everything passes through on its way to wherever ...

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Dan Meyer is pastor of Christ Church of Oak Brook in Oak Brook, Illinois.

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