Think Carefully: on disappointment, unmet expectations, and a guarded heart

think carefully

And so, dear brothers and sisters…think carefully about this Jesus

Every house has a builder, but the one who built everything is God…and we are God’s house, if we keep our courage and remain confident in our hope in Christ…

Be careful then, dear brothers and sisters. Make sure that your own hearts are not evil and unbelieving, turning you away from the living God. You must warn each other every day…so that none of you will be deceived by sin and hardened against God…

Who was it that rebelled against God, even though they heard his voice?…we see that because of their unbelief they were not able to enter his rest.”

Hebrews 3, excerpts

 

Think carefully.

Be careful.

Make sure.

Warn each other.

Why?

Because this is what is at stake: I may not experience God’s rest if I am so caught up in doubting Him that I refuse to do what He tells me.

If I follow my heart when it begins to question God, I forfeit my chance of rest.

I’ve seen it in my own life. Often, when I am most restless and full of angst, there is a train of thought I can follow back to some disappointment or unmet expectation where my heart decided God was wrong. I don’t even always realize I decided that. Often I just reacted to the situation, I was hurt, I was frustrated, and I stopped being careful with the thoughts of my heart. I let my hope and confidence fall and started to wonder if God cared, why would He let this happen? I stopped being careful to be content and I landed in the painful restlessness of a soul that is so caught up in its circumstances it has lost sight of its Savior.

How do I stop it from happening? How do I face the hard stuff of life and feel it in all its unfairness and still resist the tendency to turn away from God and harden against Him?

“…think carefully about this Jesus.” (verse 1)

“…keep our courage and remains confident in our hope in Christ.” (verse 6)

Above all else, guard your heart,
    for everything you do flows from it.” (Proverbs 4:23)

I have got to realize when I have lost my confidence. I must learn to discern when I have placed it in something other than Him: my hard work, my bank account, my job, my friends, my personality, whatever shape it takes. Confidence that has fallen on something other than Christ is lost confidence, and it will sink me.

God is the builder who is crafting good things in me, but He does not build where my heart resists him. He has said He will shape me until I look like Christ, but He will wait for a heart that once again places its confidence in Him.

To build before that point would result in a shaky foundation

But if I trust in His word, He will build rest in my life.

If I think carefully about this Jesus, my heart will find the encouragement it needs.

 

Lord-

Teach me to be cautious of my own heart. How quickly it disagrees with you and turns away in a huff, not realizing what it costs to take my eyes off of you.

I need you, how I need you. Help me see when my gaze has drifted and make it my daily task to think carefully about this Jesus.

He was a stumbling block for many, but great loss awaited those who let that stumbling be the barrier that kept them away.

 

“Taste and see that the Lord is good.
    Oh, the joys of those who take refuge in him!”

Psalm 34:8

 

“God’s promise of entering his rest still stands, so we ought to tremble with fear that some of you might fail to experience it. “

Hebrews 4:1

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