North Santa Rosa

Living With Purpose 

    If there’s one fact I’d stake a claim on, it would be that the heart and not the head is the central throne of our lives. Many a clear head has gone to its ruin through the power of a bad heart; and many a weak head has worn a crown of glory because of the strength of a good heart. The world will pass away and all of its glory will fade as a leaf, but the heart lives on.    Originally sculptured in Rome are the Four Seasons Statutes. Spring is a delicate girl with flowers in her long hair. She has a hopeful look upon her face. Summer is a woman with full lips, face, and figure. She looks healthy and vibrant. Heads of wheat are in her hair and she has a satisfied look on her face. Autumn is the same face, just a little older with a crown of clustered grapes. She looks back ever so slightly as if in retrospect. Winter has a rigid, gaunt face with pine cones intertwined in her hair.

    The marble statutes speak not only of earth’s seasons, but also of the rapid progression of human life. All life’s promises on earth end in decay except when the heart is kept sweet and young by having fellowship with Jesus. Our youthful outlook is also buoyed by the hope of eternal life. The Bible sets forth many references concerning the heart. Solomon says in Proverbs 23:26, “Oh my son, give me your heart. May your eyes take delight in following my ways.” Meaning, that if the heart is given, then it will be a complete and prosperous surrender. Proverbs 4:23 instructs us: “Guard your heart above all else, for it determines the course of your life.”

    Anselm of Canterbury says that our heart is like a mill which a certain man told his servant to grind only the best grain, whether it be wheat, barley, or oats. He told him he would make his living this way. But there was a certain other man who was jealous and sought to discredit the servant’s reputation for producing good meal. He would sneak around and anytime he found the mill unattended he would throw gravel in it to clog it or mix dirt and chaff with the meal. If the servant was faithful in watching, he produced beautiful flour which was a delight to his master. But if he didn’t and the enemy tampered with the mill, the master would become angry and not pay his servant. Our hearts are like the mill. They’re ever grinding on the thoughts and imaginations in which we feed them. The devil is our enemy and he seeks to discredit us by throwing in evil thoughts. The darkness is prevented by watchfulness and prayer. Jesus Christ says, “A good person produces good things from the treasury of a good heart, and an evil person produces evil things from the treasury of an evil heart” (Matthew 12:35).

    When a person lives daily in a spirit of prayer and feels the touch of God’s love, eternal youth will characterize the faithful heart. It’s no wonder Christ asks for our heart; for nobody cares for a thing unless it comes from the heart. When a person gives you a sincere compliment or tells you, “I love you with all my heart”, we value their words all the more because it originates from the purest and most important part of their being.

    A little girl with a handful of violets once knocked on the door of a preacher’s house. His wife answered, “How may I help you?”

    “I have this offering of flowers from my mother,” replied the little girl.

    “Your mother, child? Didn’t she die last autumn?”

    “That’s true, ma’am,” said the girl, “And your husband prayed at her grave and said my mother’s soul in all of its fullness would blossom in heaven. These are the first violets which have bloomed on my mother’s grave. I have plucked them, and I like to think she sends them to you with greetings from her heart. And mine too.”

    The preacher overheard the little girl’s sweet words and his eyes moistened. As he took the flowers from her tender hand, he put them in the outer pocket of his coat and said, “This is a gift from the heart, given out of true love.” Revelations 3:20 quotes Jesus, “Look! I stand at the door and knock. If you hear my voice and open the door, I will come in and be your friend.”

    So, Jesus Christ says he is knocking at the door of your heart, and if you let him come in, he will stay with you as a sacred guest, forever—a beacon of hope, a symbol of peace, and a love like you’ve never known.

• This bi-weekly column is written by Matthew Dobson. He’s a teacher, U.S. Army Chaplain, and the Pastor of New Bethel Baptist Church in the New York Community. His “Living With Purpose” Book series can be found and purchased on www. You can contact him at:

Posted by on Nov 26 2017. Filed under Churches, Living With Purpose, Local, Top News. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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