This article was published in 30:1 Manhood, Overcoming The Odds.
By Matthew Fretwell
When you think of the phrase a “heart for God,” more than likely you think of king David ( 1 Kings 11:14; Acts 13:22). While David was not perfect, by any means, he did have a heart for God. Looking at David then as the prime example, having a heart for God is not measured by works and words, but by thoughts and soulful yearning to be with God. David was a man who had a burning desire to be in God’s presence. David writes in the Psalms:
“One thing have I asked of the LORD, that will I seek after:
that I may dwell in the house of the LORD all the days of my life,
to gaze upon the beauty of the LORD and to inquire in his temple” (Psalm 27:4).
David’s daily thoughts were centered upon being with God—the true Shepherd. David realized that he was a fallible person; a man who was susceptible to fear, anxiety, covetousness, adultery, murder, and sin—for he was surrounded by warriors.
Having a heart for God means that I understand when I mess up and fall into sin, that I allow the Holy Spirit to convict me and to do His purifying work within me. If the goal of our faith is to be more like Christ (Eph 5:1), then I must concede to God’s directing hand, whether in discipline or joy, both are steeped in His unconditional love. Sometimes, being in the presence of God breaks me and sometimes it yields unfathomable grace, which allows me to see a holy and righteous God, who is not finished with me yet. And that is something that I strive for daily. Having a heart for God desires His will and not my will. Having a heart for God desires His moment by moment presence in my life: His Spirit pumping the breath of life through my heart, reaching out and flowing into my veins—He’s a part of me.
- What’s holding you back from being in God’s presence? Is it knowingly that you’re holding onto some type of sin that you think is hidden? God sees everything and knows everything. There is no sin so secret that God cannot see it. If you desire a heart for God then you’ll yield your flesh and spirit to His.
- How much time do you spend in prayer—in real communication with God? Do you begrudgingly enter prayer, as if a chore, or does the thought send waves of joy over you—knowing you’re entering into a relationship, a dialogue, a union of a holy Father and an earthly son? Think about it…
Matt Fretwell is married, has three daughters, is an author (Denied Desires; Identity Theft, Sanctificagious, 30:1 Manhood, 30:1 Marriage), pastor of a 112 year old revitalized church planting church (Oak Hall Baptist) in Sandston, Virginia. Matt is the founder of Job 31 Ministries; an advocate board member of Living Bread Ministries, a global comprehensive Church Planting organization; the East Coast Coordinator for New Breed Church Planting; and co-founder of a church planting and revitalization initiative called Planting RVA, in Richmond, Va. Matt also writes for Church Planter Magazine and is pursuing his doctorate in Great Commission Leadership at Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary. Twitter: @w84harpazo