“And now, O priests, this commandment is for you. If you will not hear, and if you will not take it to heart, to give glory to My name,” says the Lord of hosts, “I will send a curse upon you, and I will curse your blessings. Yes, I have cursed them already, because you do not take it to heart. (Malachi 2:1-2)
Take It To Heart
Before the Lord was to close out His final word for the people of God He pleaded with them to return with their whole hearts. Israel had suffered the bondage of a foreign land because of their rebellion. The remnant that returned struggled with their hearts to serve the Lord. A famine of the word of God was about to be inflicted upon the people for four hundred years. Christ would be heralded by the coming a man much like Elijah to turn the hearts of minds of God’s people toward the salvation of the Messiah. From the beginning it was always about the heart. Sin had destroyed the hearts of the people as the kingdom fell into idolatry. When the people returned seventy years later they continued to fall short of the glory of God because their hearts were not devoted to the Lord. While idolatry had been cured from the minds of the nation the hearts were still apathetic.
The word of God is given to change the hearts of men. Devotion to the Lord must come from a willingness to turn everything over to the will of God. There can never be a half-attempted effort. Jesus would remind His disciples that duty to the Father required all the heart, all the soul and all the mind. Heart felt love comes from hearts that are completely given over to the union of two people. God desires our love for Him to be as complete as we can give. Love between two people is seen in how they think of each other daily. There are actions each one shares with the other expresses their love. Time is spent in nurturing that love that grows every day. Our love to God cannot be anything less. Giving our hearts to the Lord is a daily experience. Reading the mind of God from His word shows His love for us and we express our love for Him by taking the time to listen to Him. As we grow older in our relationship with the Lord our devotion grows deeper.
Taking the love of God to heart was lacking in the days of Malachi. History shows the danger of not giving glory to the Lord. As people of God today we have greater blessings in Christ and should be deeper in love with the Father than any time in history. As part of the body of Christ, we experience the cleansing blood of the Son of God who loved us so much He died for us. The Father gave us His Son to sanctify and cleanse us from the dirge of sin. Our fellowship in the church of Christ is rooted in the common love we have for one another because of what He has done for us all. He has revealed His will in the written word that we can read and understand the mystery hidden for generations. The promise of Heaven is clearer than it has ever been. The security of salvation is sure and steadfast. What reason can we give not to give glory to God in our hearts every day?
Let us open our hearts to God in full love. Fall in love with the Father turning your heart to a complete devotion to what He has done for us. Live each day with your heart turned to Him. Love Him every moment giving glory to the Father for His unbelievable love He has given to each one of us. We should remind our hearts each day we do not deserve this love but the Father opens wide the storehouse of blessings to give to His children who love him with all their hearts.