Why do you have to love God with all your heart?

Last Winter the Lord told me to do something I didn’t want to do. Have you ever had that happen? You know it’s Him! You know because the second you heard Him say it, this fear just grips your heart, and you know without a shadow of a doubt, that was God! Well that morning as I heard Him ask me to give this thing up, my heart fluttered and I didn’t want to do it. So I told Him that I didn’t want to do it, but, that I would still think about it. So I thought about it. I pondered on it and I came to a conclusion. I still didn’t want to do it, but I have learned over the course of my life, that He never asks me to give something up, without a good reason. I honestly believe, judging from my own experience, that God always gives back better. Seriously.

You’re probably wondering what I was told to give up? You might wonder if it was something evil, or wicked? Something sinful. But it wasn’t! He told me to stop buying so many craft supplies for my crafting hobby. If you know me, you know I love to make handmade cards and other mixed media projects. I was buying cool new products to play with each month. Sinful? No! Distracting? Yes! It was hard to spend time with Him on occasion when I was looking at new toys to play with. And let’s face it, this society loves new toys. Now I want to mention something here. He wasn’t asking me to stop creating. He was asking me to stop buying.

After I had chosen to obey Him, (not a pleasant word, is it?) I was reading in Luke 14:33, “In the same way, therefore, every one of you who does not say good-bye to all his possessions cannot be my disciple”. Ouch. I hadn’t seen that one coming and frankly, I was glad I had made the right choice. Thankfully He hadn’t asked me to get rid of all my craft supplies. 

So, why would the Lord ask me to do this? What He showed me is that we often believe that God is only interested in the big things. And in my opinion, buying craft supplies was a little thing. It’s not like I was spending a ton of money. Or that we didn’t have the budget for it. But here’s the problem: it was a part of my heart that I had kept for myself. Have you ever considered that your heart is a big thing? It might actually be the biggest thing you have to give. Jesus tells us in Matthew 22:37 and John 10:27 that “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind”. I was keeping a part, albeit a small part of my heart to myself. Even though what I was doing was not evil or harmful, it was a part of my heart that did not belong to Him. I knew this to be true because it would not have been such a struggle to stop, if it had. 

Now, this story would not be complete it I didn’t tell you what happened after I chose to obey Him. (Yes, it really is a choice.) It didn’t take long either. Within days of my submitting to His request, I started to feel this sense of peace come over me. I actually began to feel more joy while I was creating something fun. Instead of always feeling the pressure to actually use the new products I had recently purchased, I was enjoying what I already owned. I began to pull out things I had forgotten about, that I hadn’t played with in years. Amazing. I was surprised, to be honest. I discovered that He really does know what’s best for me! I can trust Him. Even with my whole heart! So, how about you? What immediately came to your mind, when you first read this story? Don’t be afraid. You can trust Him with your whole heart. He is a very good God!

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