Proverbs 4:23 (MSG)
Keep vigilant watch over your heart; that's where life starts.
Ok.....so there has been this little red plastic pot sitting out in the road outside of our house for the past four days. I don't know how it got there, except to guess that the wind storm the other night blew it in. It is off to the side of the road, allowing cars to drive around it without too much trouble, but it is conspicuous enough for even the kids to take notice of it.
I wondered how long it would sit there. It is ridiculous that I hadn't bothered to pick it up....I have no good excuses for that. I guess I figured "someone else" would pick it up and throw it away. No one did, therefore, after my morning run, I ventured over to the little pot. Inside I found a dead tulip that was beyond recognition. I only know that it is a tulip, because it says "tulip" on the side of the paper surrounding the pot. For this reason, I am assuming that is what it was. It is still planted firmly in rich black potting soil, but the soil is now covered in snow after winter returned during the night.
As I carried the pot back to the house to throw away, I paused. The wheels began turning inside my head and I thought. I wonder if I could bring this thing back to life! But why?
Why would I spend all of that time and effort trying to save a silly $3.00 tulip? "Just go buy one if you want one, Silly", I said to myself. I set it on the step and went inside to feed the cat. But....the tulip wouldn't leave me alone. It kept eating away at me.
With the tulip turning over and over in my mind, I came inside to see what my verse from Proverbs was for today, and found the above words: "...watch over your heart; that's where life starts." If life starts in our hearts...it must end their too. Right? What if our hearts are lifeless and cold? I mean not literally of course...but what if there are parts of our heart that we have allowed to die?
I returned to thoughts of the tulip. Before long, that dead plant started representing those "dead" areas of my own heart. I am sure they are different for everyone. It could be a dream we have let go of. Maybe it's a relationship that we have given up on. Possibly it is an actual person that we have tried to share the love of Christ with over and over again, but it seems they are "dead" to Him. Whatever the "dead" part of your heart is, I know that it can be regenerated through careful attention and "vigilant watch". I'm certain that through prayer, Christ's love, and the Word of God our dead places can be brought to life!! I even read about dead bones coming to life by the breath of God in Ezekiel 37:1-10.