When Your Heart Needs Renewal

sad-girl-sitting-aloneThomas Gouge was a 17th century Puritan pastor known for his charitable work in England as well as the author of numerous books .  Below is an excerpt from his book A Word to Sinners and a Word to Saints where he reminds his readers of the simple, yet powerful, solution for hearts that need to be renewed or refreshed.  I think you will find his description of the heart in need one to which we all can relate.

Are you bound under any spiritual infirmities?  Do what those sick and diseased persons did when Christ was upon the earth.  They came to Him in faith; believing He was both able and willing to cure them; whereby they drew virtue from Him for their healing.

Are you troubled for the weakness of your faith, complaining that you have no assurance of your interest in Christ; no assurance of the pardon of your sins?  Go to Christ by prayer for the increase of faith, believing that He is able and willing to strengthen your weak faith.

Are you assaulted by the temptations of Satan, and do you fear that he may get the victory over you?  Go to Christ by prayer for strength and support against the enemy, believing there is power in Christ to strengthen you.  Lust, as strong as it is, will not be able to stand before the prayer of faith.

Are you troubled with a hard and obdurate [stubborn] heart?  With a filthy and unclean heart?  With a worldly and covetous heart?  With a proud and barren heart?  Go to Christ by prayer, believing there is a power and a willingness in Him to modify your hard and obdurate heart; to purify your filthy and unclean heart; to spiritualize your worldly and covetous heart; to humble your proud heart; and to make fruitful your barren heart.

Certainly one special reason why so many go drooping and groaning so long under the weight and burden of their spiritual maladies and diseases, is because they do not go to Christ by prayer for freedom from the same, or through the weakness of their faith, they do not believe Christ is able or willing to help and deliver them.  For what Christ said to the poor man who came to Him in behalf of his possessed child, the same He says to you: “If you can believe, all things are possible to him who believes” (Mark 9:23).

If your heart is hard, struggling with sin, doubt, pride/selfishness, grief, etc. have you actually talked to Jesus about it?  Have you described in detail to God the condition of your heart and your struggles with it?  It’s surprising how many of us who are struggling have abandoned praying specifically to God.  Talk to God and ask God for what you need and believe that He is not only able, but also willing, to change your heart.  Don’t give up on praying.  Don’t give up on the discipline, work, and effort that is your part in changing your heart.  But don’t forget the most important thing- praying consistently to God to change you and relying on His transforming power.

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One Response to “When Your Heart Needs Renewal”

  1. Thanks for sharing Bro. Todd,
    I’ve always considered my walk with Christ a condition of the heart. He is the greatest heart surgeon we have to heal our broken, afflicted, and obstinate heart. But oh so many times I forget to simply turn to Him, as Mark 9:23 says, and ask for help. Thinking because of my sinful nature, why would God help me.
    We serve a Great and Mighty, and Compassionate God!