This week we’ll spend time stirring up our affections for God through the renewing of our minds. Your mind is the gateway to your affections. What you think is worthy of your affections is what will receive them. So, as we grow in our understanding of God’s overwhelming goodness we will naturally give him our hearts. May you be stirred by the unconditional love of your heavenly Father this week as his perfect nature is revealed to you in greater, more transformative ways.
One of my favorite chapters in all of Scripture is Psalm 147. It’s a psalm laden with the wondrous works of God, rich with imagery and powerful in stirring our affections for God. In it we learn that God “determines the number of the stars; he gives to all of them their names,” and that he “covers the heavens with clouds; he prepares rain for the earth; he makes grass grow on the hills. He gives to the beasts their food, and to the young ravens that cry.”
The verse that I want to emphasize for us today, however, is verse 3: “He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds.” Jesus was a perfect example of God’s heart to do this very thing. All throughout his ministry Jesus healed those around him physically, emotionally, and spiritually. Scripture gives us insight into characters such as Mary Magdalene, who was delivered of demon possession and brought into close friendship with Christ himself. Jesus healed her spiritually, emotionally, and physically by delivering her from oppression and being her friend. Then there’s Paul. Before Jesus revealed himself to Paul, he was Saul, a man committed to destroying the very movement of Christianity that he would later give his life to build. He was a driven, successful, and prideful man. He was a religious zealot of great discipline, but a man far away from the heart of God. However, after meeting Jesus and being healed of his former ways, he was able to confidently say he counted all things “as loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I have suffered the loss of all things and count them as rubbish, in order that I may gain Christ.”
God has the same heart for you he had for Mary and Paul. He knows the wounds that people, circumstances, and sin have caused in your life. He knows what you struggle with, the habits and addictions that hold you back from living the abundant life he has planned for you. And he has both a desire and plan to heal those wounds. God desires to heal your heart right now. You don’t have to wait to encounter the power of God. God wants you to live a life receptive to all the love and blessing he longs to give you.
Let the stories of Mary and Paul fill you with a longing to encounter more of God. Allow what God has done in others’ lives to stir up a yearning to be healed by God yourself. Wait on the Lord, open your heart to him, and let him do what he has promised to do in you. He’s promised his healing, transformation, and abundant life. All that’s left is for you to receive the gift of healing he longs to give as you follow the leading of the Holy Spirit today.
Take time to press into the heart of God to heal you today as you enter into a time of guided prayer.
1. Meditate on God’s desire to heal any broken places in your life as revealed in Scripture.
“He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds.” Psalm 147:3
“He himself bore our sins in his body on the tree, that we might die to sin and live to righteousness. By his wounds you have been healed.” 1 Peter 2:24
“Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits, who forgives all your iniquity, who heals all your diseases, who redeems your life from the pit, who crowns you with steadfast love and mercy.” Psalm 103:2-4
2. Tell God of the places in your heart that are broken. Your wounds could go back to your childhood or just yesterday. Either way, God desires to heal anything that’s holding you back from fullness of life in him.
“Heal me, O Lord, and I shall be healed; save me, and I shall be saved, for you are my praise.” Jeremiah 17:14
3. Take action where God is leading you. Sometimes healing comes through forgiveness, a conversation, or taking some extra time to pray and be with God. Ask him how he feels about any wounds from your past, any broken relationships, or any recurring sin in your life. Journal what he says.
Healing is often a process, but know that God desires to lead you through every step of the way. If he puts it on your heart to forgive someone or to have a hard conversation, know that it’s best for you. While it may be hard today, your life will be better because of it. Even if the person that hurt you has passed away, you can still forgive that person. As these issues begin to come up, take time to be in God’s presence and allow him to heal the broken places in your life. God has healing and transformation in store for you, and that life is available to you right now.
Extended Reading: Psalm 147