"I count myself one of the number of those who write as they learn and learn as they write." ~St. Augustine

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Words without meaning

Sweet words were spoken today.

Words being said. Special words. Sacred words.

And, yet they seemed to be spoken with no apparent meaning. These words, though full of life and beauty, were empty and lifeless. Special words were nonchalant. Sacred words were rote and read from a page.

Today, I believe, I witnessed what God said in Isaiah 29, "The Lord says: "These people come near to me with their mouth and honor me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me. Their worship of me is made up only of rules taught by men."

I watched mouths moving without a heart involved and it saddened me deeply.

This morning I was privileged to be invited to a baptism service of a young boy, my neighbor. As his appointed "godparents" stood up in front of the congregation, they read from a piece paper many beautiful words of Truth. ...proclaiming who Christ was and the sacrifice He made on the cross. In a monotone voice and rote way they professed their personal acceptance of Jesus and they committed to raise this little boy to be a man of faith.

But, I know better. Simply put, they just don't know or love God. They do deeply love my little neighbor boy, but they do not love Jesus. And, though I am keenly aware of the fact that I cannot see their hearts, my educated guess is that their hearts are very far from Him.

Hearts far from Him. ... this grieves the Lord.
To worship Him just with words ... this angers Him.
To worship simply by tradition ... this deeply saddens my Father in Heaven.

When do I worship Him this way? I wonder today. When do I say words I don't mean... or act in ways that are not true to my heart? When, Father, do I worship you with my words alone? Or, "go to church" or "have my quiet time" simply because I always do... not because You deserve worship.

...not because I love to, long to, or I just must worship You!

Oh have mercy on us, kind Father. Our hearts are far from You! Have mercy on me, dear Father. Draw me near to You. Light again today the passion in my heart for You and for Your glory.
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