Writing in your heart
3… Your very lives are a letter that anyone can read by just looking at you. Christ himself wrote it—not with ink, but with God’s living Spirit; not chiseled into stone, but carved into human lives—and we publish it.
Paul uses the concept of a letter to tell the people of Corinth that each of them is a letter or testimonial of God’s work. The world reads others like a book – what they say and especially what message they convey. The message that Christians convey is one of salvation, of deliverance, of redemption, of grace, joy and peace.
The question is – how does this happen? How do you change from a godless being stumbling along the road of darkness into someone who suddenly walks bravely, purposefully and joyfully in the light? From Paul’s letter it is clear that this is the work of the Holy Spirit.
It is the Holy Spirit who works in people’s hearts. The Holy Spirit writes in our hearts. The Holy Spirit transforms us to make us brand new. This is radically different from what it was like in the old dispensation. In the old dispensation God wrote on two flat stone tablets. God gave all people 10 laws according to which they had to live. Two boundaries were erected and watch out if you ever overstepped the line. Then you were in big trouble.
But with the new dispensation where Jesus took the punishment for our sin, God’s way of working changed. Instead of two cold, hard stone tables feared by people, because what if we don’t make it, what if … God decided to concern Himself with each one personally. Instead of cold, hard chisels, God decided to write his Spirit softly and personally in every person’s heart. Instead of cold, hard punishment, God talks softly to each one of us.
Every day I hear many stories about people whose actions are letters being written by the Holy Spirit. I get to know of people whose hands pick up and whose feet walk where others are suffering. They make a difference wherever they go. They have to, because the Holy Spirit writes generously in their hearts.
But I also see people who simply turn away and walk on with no concern in the world.
What is the difference? I think the former have opened their hearts to the Holy Spirit, while the latter are still working with stone and chisel. The former are compelled by love and the latter by the fear of boundaries and punishment.
The only right way is the way of the Holy Spirit who writes and works in our hearts with love. You are the only one that can allow the Holy Spirit to come in. You open or close the door to your heart. Maybe it is time that each of us makes a dwelling for the Holy Spirit in our hearts and lives seriously. The Holy Spirit does not cry loudly like the stone tablets with Moses’ laws. No, the Holy Spirit is different. The Holy Spirit walks lightly and softly. We only have to make space and listen.
What does your letter say?
Do people see the works of the Spirit by what you do?
Shouldn’t you first be quiet and listen?
Our Father, living inside us, how many times have we closed our ears to your guidance? How many times have we hardened our hearts because we didn’t want You living there? I don’t want to live like that. I would like to make space for You in my life. I want to listen to You and follow You. Please come and live in my heart. I will be quiet and listen. Amen