The heart in immensely valuable. If we do not value our hearts, we will become broken because of it. In this talk, learn 3 steps that will move you closer to emotional honesty and walking with God from a place of honesty, from your heart.
Hey, I'm Josh Hallmark. And I want to thank you for listening to one of the Oaks podcasts. Remember this message from Isaiah chapter 61. God takes the seeds of brokenness and turns them in the Oaks of righteousness and that is you.
We started a new series last week, I want to talk about the heart and some various things related to the heart, one of our core values, as a church is the heart. And we'll talk a little more about that. Last week, we had a talk called honest prayer. And we were talking about praying from a place of raw honesty with the Lord. And we looked at some of the different people we mentioned, Job's lament, the psalmist then communicating with honesty, and then you had other people who were very, very honest, Moses, Elijah. These are all people that sort of complained to God. But they I think they were speaking to him from a place of honor. These are all people who are revered, they will go down in the annals of Heaven's history, if you will, as great men and women. Hannah was one of them. Remember, she poured her? Her heart out to God. So we talked about having an honest prayer? Well, I'm going to continue on that thought. And today, I want to talk to you about how to have an honest art in three easy steps mentioned how to have an honest heart. And this is really a talk that I want. I want us to be able to get in touch with where we are. You know, the first question that God asked Adam and Eve, after the fall, was, where are you? It was? I mean, the story plays out, he says, Where are you? And they're like, well, we did you know, we hear We heard you in the garden, we hid. But I really think it was a rhetorical question. I don't think God was trying to spot where they were in the garden. You know, he's got, he's got cameras up everywhere. So it was a rhetorical question. I think the Lord would like to ask you that question right now. And what would you say? If he said, Where are you? This is a question that forces reflection. It forces us to look up on our sails. And I think that what God is getting at what he would like for us to do is to look within ourselves. And here's the verse that we're kind of using right now. And this is from Psalm 51, verse six, said, by the psalmist, David himself. And I may have mentioned this last week, I can't remember I've been talking about this Sunday in Chapel, as well. But David was a man's man. He was a fierce warrior. But he was deeply in touch with himself in his heart where he was, and even, you know, in the Psalms, when you read them, he says things like, we looked at Psalm 25, last week, where he said, I'm in anguish, he said, Be gracious to me, because I am afflicted, I am greatly distressed. And some of us are in distress. And we don't even know we're in distress. I told you guys about how I had a phone conversation with somebody with Tony Wakefield, and he, he used that term on me, he turned it around on me. And he says, You sound like you're in distress to me. And that's not necessarily what I thought he would say. Right. And so anyway, I want to talk a little bit about this today. Let me jump right in it. And I will try to move with brevity today. But I feel like that's sometimes an empty promise just to let you know, but I will do my best. Okay. The first thing, and let me just go back to this. I don't think that we actually read this verse. This is Psalm 51. Six. David says, Behold, you delight This is saying to God, you the light, in truth, and the N word being and you teach me wisdom in the secret heart, You know, there's a place inside of us, we would call our heart our innermost being. And this is the place where like you can say you believe something, you can say that, you know that you I'm trying to think of an example. You can say that you believe that God is going to take care of your needs. But if you try to manipulate and control every situation to work it out towards your own end, are, there's what you say you believe, but then there's what you actually are doing, which communicates on a deep level, what you really believe there's the conscious mind what you think you believe. And there's the subconscious, there's your heart, there's your that secret place, if you will, wouldn't it be awesome to have wisdom in the secret place? Wouldn't it be awesome, that if we had internalize the Lord and His purposes, in his wisdom, on such a deep level that our subconscious comes out with good stuff? Well, God wants to minister on that level. And the thing that we said last week that I'll just remind you of, is God is not just about externals. Look, ladies, if Makeup Look, she makes you look better, you just go ahead and wear makeup. But know that God wants you to be adorned inwardly as well. Guys, you can't hide behind your big truck, I'm just gonna tell you. God loves big trucks. But they will not change what's going on. In the inside of me, you're tracking with me. So this is what David said, a man who was fierce. But he said, and this was actually when he was repenting for his sins, he said, you delight in truth in the inward being, there came a moment see David committed sin with Bathsheba, then he had Uriah the Hittite, murdered in battle, he sent him to the front of the battle and then pulled away so it was effectively murder. And David was running until Nathan confronted him with a story. I think that's kind of neat, you know, the Lord used a story. And and then David had a revelation. And I would say that was that first moment where truth hit him on the inside. Because before then, the point I'm making is that there was some time that transpired we have the ability to push down what is really happening, okay. Like, you get hurt by something, somebody, somebody does something that is malicious towards you. Or something or you're maybe you make a big blunder, you make a sin, and for a time, you can push it down, but God is actually asking for there to be congruent on the inside as to what reality is. And so this is kind of what I'm talking about. Now. We want to be aware of what's going on in our hearts. So number one, the first thing you got to do if you're gonna learn to have an honest heart is to number one, learn to care about your heart. Your heart has value, look at your neighbor and do this. Your heart is worth more than that is worth more than money, your heart is worth lots, okay? Your heart is immensely valuable. When we look at that part of us, this is what Jesus died for, is the hearts of men. So we have to understand that there is something intrinsically valuable about the center of who you are. And it's worth it for you to pay attention to it. In fact, the proverb says this, Proverbs 423, above all else, guard your you guys know this verse, don't use this one a lot. Above all else, guard your, for everything you do, flows from it. What you believe what you internalize the picture of God that you see deeply in your heart, the pain that you have deeply in your heart, all these things that are deeply in your heart, actually are source their command and control and your life flows from that deepest part of you. And so the crazy thing is that we're often not aware at all about what's going on in that place. But we want to learn, to value our heart to see that it is where it is of immense value, what's going on inside of us. Here's actually the quote from our website, if you want to look, this literally is a value of our church. Um, it says the heart is a wellspring of life, plagiarize that scripture. God desires each of us to be healed, and whole, and at wrist in our hearts. And so the first thing that we have to do is to say, Hey, this is not just some preacher that's talking about touchy feely stuff, get in touch with your heart and your own pain or you know, either you value it, or you will be destroyed from the lack of valuing it, as you quote for the day, either value the heart, or be destroyed from the lack of valuing your heart, because Jesus paid for it to be healed, and to be whole, in the words of Isaiah to be bound up. He paid for that. And so it's very, very valuable. You remember when Jesus said to the Pharisees, actually, Isaiah said it, your lips praise me, but your hearts are far from me. This was an indictment for Incan Druid. He got an admissions last week southerners are the best at this, right? We're the best at saying Hey, how's it going? It was all good. You know, but in reality is not all good. But we can't play that game with life. And the Lord wants us to stop. Let me just rephrase that I, I'll just be honest with you guys. I feel like God's putting his finger on me saying the Lord wants me to stop and say Where are you? Thank you. I appreciate that. Can I get another? Okay. I appreciate you guys identify with that. Because I mentioned last week that the the Bible translator to the city had the gift of prod, you know, or I think that was the word he used plot the gift of plot he could just lean in and, and so much of Christian faith has to do with believe in God and pressing forward. But we don't press at the expense of our heart, we want to carry our heart with us. If pressing forward is the tank that we use to push through the hedge rows of life, we have to still have that inside this protected. Right. So the first thing to do is to care about your heart. And I just want to give you permission. You know, the Bible says love Lord, you got all your hearts, muscle strength, living every sale. Um and second is to love. Love, you're sorry, I said all that too fast. Love the Lord. That's the first command. Say command is Love your neighbor as yourself. But if you don't value yourself, you will not value your neighbor. And so it's really important that we value that we say you don't have if you if you're all broken up inside and you don't know it, you're just going to hurt people. That's really what you're going to do. You're not going to love your you'll love your neighbor as yourself. Right, you'll you know, I use that as a euphemism to mean that you'll hurt them. You will hurt them. And so the first thing you got to do say this is okay I have permission from the Lord to to value my heart or to guard my heart to Give It Thought or attention. The King James of that versus with all diligence, guard your heart or keep your heart at my say, with all that means diligently give attention to your heart because out of it flows the things of life. So number two, so number one is value the heart. Number two, you're like No, please don't tell me this, especially the guys in here. Get to feel your heart, you've got to let yourself feel. Listen. There is a verse that says that the heart is deceitful above all things exceedingly evil. That is the my opinion the Old Covenant heart. But God gave a promise. And I've actually have this verse in Ezekiel, where the Lord said, I'll put my spirit in you. And I'll give you a new heart. And I'll take out the hardest stone and I'll give you a heart of flesh. I'm actually about to share that. I'm going to share something else with you real quick. Here's a deal about a heart of a heart of flesh by the way as it can feel the hardest stone it doesn't feel now here's the problem. with having a hard heart or having a heart of stone is that the heart of stone? Can't feel pain, but it also cannot feel love. So the same hardness that blocks it from pain, don't want to feel pain at all expenses. That same hardness keeps you from actually receiving the good things. So it's like, I don't know if y'all know this or not God's really healthy, right? God is very healthy. Does God experience pain? The Bible says, Don't grieve the Holy Spirit. That's because he can be great. He has grieved. He experienced his grief, sorrow over some of the things we do. It hurts him. But God also has the capacity to be blessed and delighted by us at the very same time. It's part of the same thing. So I'm not saying that you will never experience pain. It's kind of part of being alive. Right? But you want to feel it. I got a picture here for you. So when I'm a lasha, which is my almost 13 year old birthdays coming up soon. When he was about how old was he? I can't remember. Eight or nine. We were Asher was an all stars and we're playing baseball out in opa. locka. And, you know, Asher's out playing on the field and lashes just running around having a big time. And they're playing Chase. And anyway, he bites the dust, he falls down. And he falls just on the ground in a way that he hits his I think it was actually his Lissa, can you remember? His clavicle? his collarbone, and he broke it. And if you look right here, you see how bad that break is right there. Oh, so I'm I am. This is just part of this is a maybe a strength and a weakness. But I'm a rubber rub some dirt on it kind of guy. So I'm just like real? some dirt on it. Right? You're okay. I'm sorry, but I'm really sorry. That hurt. Our let's go back to watching the game. You know. Anyway, Elijah, he hurt himself. And that night. He um, he kept saying, Oh, it hurts really bad. And so you know, and this is kind of my my rule of thumb. Okay, if they're hurt at first, okay, roll some dirt on it. But if it keeps hurting, something's wrong. You know, yeah, we don't want to go to the hospital, etc, etc. But we need to, because he's still hurting. Listen, this right here is make sense that what I just said makes sense. So we went to the doctor. And that is actually not a picture of his clavicle. Okay, just so you know, that's some random person that that person. I don't know, it looks like that was almost sticking out of their skin there. There's probably making a bump up here. Anyway, yeah. lashes, they were actually able, they were able to sit hands. And, and he had to wear sling for a while, but he was okay, six weeks he was running good to go. And might be proud before then even kids are resilient. But pain is actually a good thing when you think about it. Because, you know, there's a rare disorder, where people it's like a genetic disorder where people don't feel pain. And so they have hot water. The only reason they know they're hurting is because their skin is peeling, you know, turning red, or whatever. That is not normal. To feel pain is actually a blessing in our lives. I want you to think about it. When you go to the doctor. And something hurts. What does he say? Where does it hurt? Right? Okay, it hurts. So that pain actually points to where attention is needed. But here's the crazy crazy thing, when it comes to our heart is that usually the type of pain we feel in our heart, unless there's been the death of a loved one or something that's been really, you know, or some kind of betrayal or something that's this high level. The pain is Usually not bad enough where you think I got to go to the doctor, I'm saying the pain is not, it's not screaming at you. Usually, the pain is at a lower level, where we have the illusion that we can silence the pain, just work through it, right? Here's a problem or just take some Tylenol or just drink a few beers, right? Or just work. This is the crazy thing about us guys. I don't know why we do this. But we, instead of listening to the pain of our heart, what we do instead is we try to pretend it's not there, or we try to do it. Right. We just take some aspirin for the heart or some, you know, ibuprofen for the heart, and we get temporary relief. But then we start taking that ibuprofen over and over. But it's not ibuprofen, it's drinking, or it might be some people, excessive religiosity. They're really, really, really, really religious. But they're completely out of touch with their heart. Another person, I had a great uncle, you guys. And it just dawned on me at some point. But this man, as a kid, I never really saw him. And he was my neighbor. I never saw him when he was not working. He worked all the time. He was a very hard worker. And if he was not working this is, I didn't even know him. I don't think when he because I think he was he built houses. But then after he retired, he still always worked. He was married, had kids and grandkids. And I'm assuming he stopped to eat sometimes. But I always saw him working. He was always working. And at one point, like Initially, I just thought, Man, he's a hard worker, right. But at some point in my journey hit me and I thought, why not work? And I let ask you guys the same question. Is it you know, we are really guilty of activity in excess. And sometimes we learn that the pain that we feel doesn't hurt so much, as long as we're busy. So we're busy, we keep it going, we stay engaged, we stay on our phone, we stay in our video game, we stay at work we stay doing, because the moment things get quiet. That's where we become awakened to the fact that we're hurting. But what if Jesus is saying stop and listen to the voice of your pain, because your collarbone is broken. So this is what I'm reading this book right now, I want to recommend this as is called the voice of the heart, meaning your heart is speaking right? The voice of the heart by chip dawn. He says something he says something about the experience of hurt, he says hurt his internal bleeding. But if you just numb the pain doesn't stop the bleeding. So if you don't deal with your pain eventually. And here's the problem, guys, young people are very good at masking their pain and pressing through. But when I think when you hit your 40s and 50s is when people's lives start falling apart. And the reason why is because you can only fake it, you can only grin and bear it for so long. And then things start breaking down. But what if Jesus actually expressed interest in healing the hurts that are in our heart, then if we feel the pain, then we can say okay, I feel the pain. There's nothing weak about that. There's no weakness involved with saying, I'm experiencing pain inside, just like a broken bone hurts. Just like it hurts when you stub your toe, I feel pain. And here's the deal. Some of the pains we feel are stub your toe level and some of them are broken bone level. And we've got to be able to give our pain a voice so that it can be healed. What if I told you that Jesus was interested in this? There's a little verse over in Isaiah, chapter 61, which you guys may have heard of this passage before. Jesus says I am anointed. In other words, I am supernaturally empowered by my Father, I'm anointed. Jesus quoted this when he started his ministry. I'm annoying, and he's annoying me He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted. Jesus. Look, the Bible says that he took stripes. He took stripes for our transgressions are willful sins, and he was bruised. That's an inward wound, outward wound for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities. That's an inner wound Jesus was wounded, so that our insides could be healed to an equity that's like our that's like an inward desire to do us wrong. Something pushes Jesus wants to heal the outside and the inside. You see what I'm saying? Did you guys know that I actually, I read this doctor's report one time of Jesus crucifixion. And the the doctor that wrote this, it was a medical doctor breaking down the various stages based on what the scripture says that whenever they stabbed him, and out came blood and water, that, that it revealed something that had happened. And they said that Jesus literally, literally died of a broken heart. And I actually I read about something different this past week that I could connect with it, is that I did a search about a broken heart. And and it said, Can a person actually dive a broken heart, and it talks about people who are severely stressed or severely depressed their heart or, you know, other severe type, things like that. Their heart literally breaks out and then like break in half, but like, something happens in their heart. But one of the things apparently has to do with blood and water and the way it came out, so this doctors thing anyway, if Jesus took stripes for you, and he took bruising for you, and his heart was literally broken over you, do you not think he's interested in doing something with your heart? Think about it. Think about it. Here's the question, what is a broken heart look like? We saw what a broken clavicle look like. It's a lot easier to spot in it. We had a ministry of event one time. And it was like our biggest thing of the years, we were doing campus ministry, and I jumped over this wall. At least I tried to jump over it. And, and I was looking at speakers like put we're putting sound system together and all this stuff. And I wasn't paying attention and I slipped over that wall. And I gash my leg and I in line. I had a hole in my leg, a big ol gap. It was nasty. When ginger saw it. She was all honey. I'm sorry. That's not what she said. She meant, ooh, you like him and shot? No, that's what he said that. That was Brian Smith. It said that. Okay, I'm sorry. It was a staff member that said that. He's like you like you've been shot. Um, and I was like, thanks, man. For the for the encouragement, you know, anyway, it was obvious. The wound was obvious. But when an internal wound is there, you can't see it. So you have to be attentive to the pain. And if you'll be attentive the pain, then Jesus can actually heal it. He's a doctor, right? So you want to feel your heart, let yourself feel it. say this to me with me say self. I give you permission to feel the pain and do something about it. Right? The doctor might tell you something to do. You tell him where it hurts. They might tell you something to do about the pain, you kind of have, you have to have some ownership over you can't just blame other people for your pain. It won't work out for you. Right? I mean, they might have done it. But they're not at the doctor's office, you're the one who's bleeding. Right? So you have to take some ownership over your pain. But here's the good news. And this is the this is the blessing. This is where as Aiko said, I will give you a new heart, put a new spirit in you, I'll remove your hardest stone and give you a heart of flesh. I will give you a heart that feels God you don't want to be the hardest stone. You can't have relationship. If your heart is hard. You cannot do relationship you were created for relationship. So if you don't have your needs met in your heart in a legitimate way, your heart is so hungry to have those needs met, that you will have those needs met in an illegitimate way. That means that you will try to have your needs met in ways that God has not sanctioned, like sex outside of marriage or like drunkenness, or like drug addiction, or like all other kind of any kind of idle any kind of violence. Or idle. Those are all things that we turn to, to try to deal with our pain. But Jesus wants us to own the pain so that we can deal with it. So here's some feelings that you might feel like okay, hurt, or I feel hurt. I feel lonely. Or I feel sad. I feel anger. I feel fear. I feel guilt, I feel ashamed. I feel glad that's a pause like that. I'll pause the one. Number three, here's my last point. So number one is you want to value the heart. Number two is you want to feel the pain. We can't keep doing things to keep us from feeling the pain, because that makes it get worse. Number three is you have to express your heart. You know, there's a whole category of Psalms called psalms of lament. This is where the psalmist is pouring out his heart. It's okay to grieve. Jesus said, Blessed are those that mourn. for they shall be comforted. Psalm 130, David said, out of the depths, I cry, do Lord, hear my voice out of the depths. That's where the Lord wants us to get to. What if What if your prayers instead of being out of the shallows, I pray to you got out of the repetition, I prayed you Oh, God, out of the out of the thin, I pray to God, that's not what the Lord's looking for. This is what he's looking for. This is what David prayed out of the depths. A crowd of you. Look, guys, you might start fishing with this stuff, you might start telling God how you feel. And you might get into a whole big ol pocket of hurt, that you never even dealt with. You just pushed it down. You just pushed it way down. But then the Lord have finally allow you to express that processing pain involve giving your heart a voice, I'm gonna and I'm going to tell you three different ways that you can express your pain, okay? Three different people that you can trust your pain to. Number one is with yourself. It's kind of got to start there, you've got to be willing to admit where you hurt, or how you feel. It's okay to feel doesn't negate your faith. It doesn't mean that you're not believe David said, I feel in distress yet I will hope in you. You see there, there's not a false dichotomy is not either this, or this, it can be both. And so the first person is you can trust your pain yourself. And you can't help yourself with it. But you can at least get to a point where you're honest with yourself. The second is the Lord, right? This is the most important one. And maybe I should have said him first, but be unable to express yourself to God. Jesus has given us a name is called a manual, it means he's with us. So he wants us to know that he is like with us in all our issues and our pain. And so I tell the Lord, if I manage ginger, I tell God about it. I'm rarely ever mad at ginger. I did find a journal entry recently that where I was and I said I'm angry. I was telling the Lord this. And, you know, I might have got to actually I might have got a different perspective after I was able to kind of put it out there. Oh, maybe she should be angry, right? But you, you it's okay to feel that and be able to communicate that. And so, um, so communicate I love this little tool right here. That right there is called a journal. Um, and you can you know, you can journal on your, on your computer. My good friend Anthony scanner just wrote me this week, and told me he's got a new app, a journaling app that he has just released. And you could probably go to his website and find it. But it incorporates some of this stuff into a journaling app, which I thought was really neat. I'm I'm just now starting to read about some of this stuff. But anyway, there's people that are developing this but anyway, the whole idea is to communicate to the Lord how you feel. This is you know, Jeremiah, pour your heart out like water in the presence of Lord. This is Davidson And from the depths, out of the depths, I cry to you. So, so the Lord taught to the Lord. And then the third thing you know, to the third person is that you can talk to other people, right? This is why it's really important for us to stop and let people talk to us. And when we can to be vulnerable enough to tell other people how we're feeling. I know you can't do that with everybody, right? But Lord, give us people that we can do that with. And if you can't do that, if you feel like you don't have anybody to talk to, you talk to the Lord really do start somewhere. But when we can slow down enough to let each other express how we feel, there is a healing balm that comes with communicating and this is what were made for us relationships, right. So anyway, I want to do this. Would you guys give me five minutes is 1204, would you give me five minutes for you to just sit there? And I want you to think about how you feel for just a minute I ask Anna to play some music. And this is back that question that the Lord asked Genesis three now, where are you? And this is a different translation of that. Psalm 151. is you want complete honesty. So let's try to do that in prayer right now. Lord, I feel Think about it. You don't have to make anything up. You're just trying to find how it is you feel. Listen, you're a human. So you feel somehow. So let's identify that and you can go in and start playing that music. And we're going to take just five minutes. And last week, last week, I gave this out I'm going to leave this up here. I would love for you guys to take this home and practice outside of church. Sometime. This is just a little thing that says it just helps. This just gives those feelings that I mentioned. Let's take five minutes. Let's sit here and I want you to feel the blank and Lord, this is how I feel. Or this is how this is where I want to get to. Can you help me with that? And we're going to end with what David said I will hope in You.
For more information about The Oaks, visit theoaks.org. Thanks for listening.