For one who believes with his heart and so is justified, and one confesses with the mouth and so is saved. Romans 10:10
I love Sundays! I love them for lots of reasons but my favorite part about Sunday is the way I feel after coming home from mass. My strength is renewed, my hope is filled up and my spirit is lifted. I always feel a sense of
enthusiasm and joy and I believe the grace God has just slathered on me will bless me on my Christian walk all week. I guess I feel a little “ten feet tall and bullet proof”. If I’m completely honest though…I don’t usually make it past Tuesday afternoon before I start to feel the burden of my human sinfulness bearing down on me. I forget to trust here and there, I let my mind run off like a new puppy during Morning Prayer or I’m mowed over by a wave of impatience. Then there I am…not nearly ten feet tall and certainly not bullet proof at all. It seems my will and God’s plan crash at the intersection of Eternal Salvation and Stubborn Nature regularly!
In Paul’s letter to the Romans he wrote beautifully about our salvation through Jesus. These words from chapter 10 are so comforting and they seem so simple; believe it in your heart and confess your belief and there ya go! But before I do my little “Yeah, I can SO do this” dance around the ring
like Rocky, I hear my mother’s voice saying, “Whoa Bessie…not so fast!” What does “believe with his heart” and “confess with the mouth” really
look like? I will be the first in line to say my heart and my mouth sometimes get off course.
If I truly believe in the Lord with my whole heart then that means there is no room for unjust anger or judgmental feelings or failing compassion upon the marginalized. And then there is the issue of my mouth. I don’t think I can spew impatient statements and sassy retorts one minute and the good news of Jesus the next and have things work out all peachy! Just about the time I think I have this “Christian living” and “discipleship” thing all figured out, I hear scripture like these words from Romans and I realize I’ve got a lot of work to do. I don’t look at that in a hopeless, discouraging way at all. I look at it as an invitation to work on my heart and mouth because salvation is worth it…eternal life is worth it!
Lent is a great time to own up to the fact that we sometimes fall short…way short… and thank God for that awareness. Yup, you read that right, I said THANK GOD, for that awareness. He’s not going to zap us with a lightning bolt, He’s going to love us and welcome us with His ever open arms as we try again to get it right tomorrow…He’s just that great to us! Every now and again I need to hear words like these from St. Paul and take an inventory of my heart and my mouth. If I am going to believe with my whole heart, I need to push some things out that are in His way of achieving total occupancy of my heart. I also need to work harder at making my mouth declare things that are pleasing to His ears. Thank goodness it’s Sunday…I think I can do it!
A Seed To Plant: Sit still for a wee bit today and ask yourself what else is harbored in your heart besides a love for Christ. Then sit still a wee bit longer and ponder what things are coming from your mouth other than the words of our loving Father.
Blessings on your day!
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