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  • Writer's picturePayton Tilley

What is Put in Your Heart?

In life we become polluted with worries and the mundane aches and stress of life. Where we used to see dreams and talents, we have let slosh fill us and a state of, "I don't care, I don't have time."

I am not chastising but slapping my own wrist. For I have let things I once pushed to be, become the things that have been pushed back. I am honestly writing in the hopes to encourage and help someone else.

In the Bible we see God use so many people and even . . . give people dreams. Do not mistake this post to be of the variety that express over and over the slogan "Follow Your Heart." Human hearts and flesh cannot lead us in the best path. But the amazing beauty of when we open our hearts to Jesus is that He can give our flesh a spirit. He can direct and give dreams. For we may forget that Christ is fully God but also fully man, which means he makes whole what our flesh lacks.

So the title of this post is What is Put in Your Heart?

This question comes from a verse that hit me last year as I studied Nehemiah with a close friend. Nehemiah 2:12 says this: "And I arose in the night, I and some few men with me; neither told I any man what my God had put in my heart to do at Jerusalem; neither was there any beasts with me, save the one that I rode upon."

"what my God had put in my heart to do" - THAT is what stood out to me. Nehemiah knew that God had placed this dream, this burden almost, to go to Jerusalem and rebuild the wall. What's even more beautiful is how Nehemiah called God "my God" and continually prayed before even going to Jerusalem.

He had a dream placed upon his heart to do something for the Lord and God's people. Many other people in the Bible also had dreams impressed upon them or a desire to act and use their gifts, to follow a God given dream. If you ask people around you, some will say much the same.

This past week at work, someone found out I liked to write and want to work toward being a novelist. What they didn't know was that it had been pushed back and I hardly had touched it because of strains on time or a feeling that it doesn't matter anymore and won't happen. I ached so much to do it and see my characters and stories, the history and lives of my fiction, reach tangible hands and real people. And to be honest, sometimes while writing, I feel the most at peace and close to God. But life . . . as we say . . . had happened.

Yet . . . here I was in the cafe with someone asking me about my writing, having no clue to the turmoil that question brought.

But I shook my head and couldn't help but start spouting out how much I liked to write, what I liked to read, different types of writing and well, everything. I was proudly entering the geek side and loving it.

But the nagging feeling took back over, the weight that it WAS important to me, it was deeply engrained in my heart and the pursuit had slowly stopped. I'm sure we all have felt that. Life has a way of pulling our thoughts and efforts away from things we once had an abundance of time and treasure for.

The thing that had been put in my heart, felt like a fire that someone had kept trying to put out with water. But it still sparked and burned low.

"You can't ever give up on your dreams. Even if life gets busy, you have to keep pushing for what you love." The person said to me.

My body grew warm. She was right. And yes, someone may read that or listen to that interaction and think it trivial or cliche. Many wouldn't even think it spiritual at all.

But it felt as if something was pursuing me again and wanting me to pursue the dream put inside me. The exhilaration I feel at writing a scene that breaks me and hopefully breaks someone else in the best way. The way I can write and forget about the things around me and become lost in history and people before me. The way I see people's struggles and use them, and even my own to weave something, even if now just for my eyes. The dream and prayer that every word is a mission field and makes someone feel less alone and draws them closer to God, seeking Jesus, seeing purpose.

So, as I asked myself, I shall also ask you: What is in your heart? What has your God put in your heart? What is your talent and gift you MUST use?

And if maybe the annuls of time have dulled it, pray and ask Him to restore it and make you realize it again. He wants to use us and I hope we desire to be used, to have our dreams bring His glory.

And we must be thankful when He reminds us, or sends a coworker, to revive the dream He has set in our hearts.

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