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All My Heart

A Reflection on Matthew 22:34-40

“You shall love the Lord, your God, with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind.” (Matthew 22:37)

My heart is a stone. It weighs heavy in my chest. I am trying, Lord, trying to love. But I just can’t sometimes. I have closed myself off to love. Not on the surface; on the surface, I appear loving. I pray. I give. I laugh and cry. But under the layers, deep down, there is a stone in the center. It is impenetrable. And, Lord, how can I love you with all my heart if part of it is stone? Can I give you the stony part? It feels like you couldn’t possibly want that part of me. That is the part that can’t love. The part that doesn’t feel. The part that turns me inward and bears bad fruit: selfishness, greed, pride, laziness, gluttony… How could you want that?

Am I just one more Pharisee? Just one more who hears your words, witnesses your miracles, and still, deep down, won’t believe? Why don’t these church leaders actually stop, look inside themselves, and listen to what the Father is saying in their hearts? They are too busy talking, too busy arguing, too busy holding on to control as tightly as they can. They will not let go. They will not give God full reign of their hearts.

I do the same, and it tears me up inside. Because, Lord, I want to love you with all my heart and all my soul and all my mind. I want to love my neighbor as myself. But Lord, I don’t love part of myself. That part where sin dwells. The deep darkness. The impenetrable stone. I hate it, and I wish you would just take it and cast it out of me. Because the pain of its presence is sometimes just too much. And try as I may to get rid of it myself, it still stays.

But I hear you calling in that darkness. I hear you say to stop trying to do it myself, that I need to surrender even this. You say this is something you have to heal, not something I can work on and improve on my own. And it is hard to hear. Because I am impatient. I want to be perfect, and I want it now. But you whisper to Surrender. Because you do want this part of me. You want all of me: all my heart, all my soul, all my mind. You want even the stony part. You will not get rid of it. Instead, You will transform it. You can turn my heart of stone into flesh. Because nothing is impossible with you.

by Katie

#Katie #Matthew #ScriptureReflection

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