It strikes me how often the "heart" is mentioned in scripture. One of my favorite instances of this is when Paul prays for the Ephesians about their "inner man."
He says, "For this reason I bow my knees before the Father, from whom every family in heaven and on earth is named, that according to the riches of His glory He may grant you to be strengthened with might through His Spirit in the inner man, and that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith; that you... know the love of Christ which surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled with all the fullness of God." (14-21)
Isn't that so rich and powerful?! No? Read it again!
Paul is praying that the faithful in Ephesus reach into their "inner man." What is their inner man? What is in our in-most being? The most protected part of our body and soul, the engine of all that we do - the heart. Paul is praying that the love of Christ, the most perfect kind of love, be infused into our heart. He doesn't just leave it at that. He prays that we be "filled with all the fulness of God." So as our eyes are floating around with all this love and power, he wishes that we pour the same into all that we do and with all those that we encounter in our lives.
When I played basketball in high school the coach would always say "leave it all out on the court." I don't know about you but I don't think we ever fully understood what that meant. Was he referring to Paul's prayer? Kinda doubtful. But isn't the same true for our lives? Isn't the same true for our prayer time and counseling on the sidewalk in front of the abortion clinics? What is it that those going in and out of the clinic see in us? Yes, both the clients and the workers. Not what they think but what they see. Is Christ's love pouring out of us? You can practice by looking at the door of the clinic on Babcock. (When they built the place I asked them to make sure the door was reflective. *wink wink*) Seriously though, I urge you next time you are on the sidewalk, to reflect on Paul's prayer. Make it yours. I urge you to leave it all out on the sidewalk.
We will be there from 7am to 4pm this Saturday. Never been? Need a partner? Call me.
An image of what some call the "sacred heart of Jesus" drawn on the sidewalk today.The wounds and crown of thorns allude to the manner of Jesus' death, while the fire represents the transformative power of divine love.
Have you had an instance or witnessed one when Christ seemed to be fully present on the sidewalk? Feel free to share in the comments below.