Living By Faith Blog


Biblical, battle-tested, real-life help for "living by faith in the Son of God" (Galatians 2:20). — Steve Fuller

A Spiritual EKG For Your Heart

A normal EKG

When a doctor gives you an EKG, he compares your heart’s EKG with a normal, baseline EKG.

If your EKG looks close to normal — good news.

If not — there’s reason for concern.

This made me wonder …

How does God’s Word describe a healthy, born-again, Christian heart?

What does it desire, feel, experience?

And how does my heart compare?

Is it good news?  Or is there reason for concern?

Is this really possible?

Can we find Scriptural descriptions that fit every born-again heart?

After all, people vary in emotions, personality, and temperament.

So I’ll need to be careful not to —

  • apply descriptions of one person’s experience to everyone.
  • assume that a one-time experience will be experienced constantly.

So with those cautions in mind — let’s see if we can discover in God’s Word descriptions of a normal, healthy, born-again heart —

From his innermost being will flow rivers of Living Water — John 7:37-38

This is a promise Jesus gives to everyone who believes — so that’s all of us.  He says our heart-thirsts will be so satisfied by the Holy Spirit that Living Water will overflow our hearts.  But do we feel this all the time?  I don’t think so.  Read on …

My soul thirsts for God, for the living God — Psalm 42:2

Because psalms are Israel’s songbook, every believer sang these words.  Which means every believer has times when they don’t experience the thirst-quenching presence of God.  But when we don’t, our response will be to bring our thirsts to Him, and cry out for more.

Joy unspeakable and full of glory — I Peter 1:8

This is shocking.  Peter says this is true of all his readers — and he’s writing to all the believers in Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia, and Bithynia (1Pet 1:1).  Not that we experience this constantly.  But this verse shows that every believer will have times when our joy in Christ is indescribable and full of His glory.  But we will also have times when we pray …

How long will you hide your face from me? — Psalm 13:1

Again, this is part of Israel’s songbook, so every believer has times when we feel that God is hiding His face from us.

This does not mean God no longer loves us.  But in great love God sometimes hides His experienced presence from us — to deepen our hunger for Him, humble us before Him and others, and purify our faith.  And He does this in order to bring us even more of His experienced presence.

Besides You I desire nothing on earth — Psalm 73:25

Again, this is a psalm sung by every Old Testament saint, which means we will all have times when we so taste God’s glory that we desire nothing else.  We will not experience this constantly (Psa 42:2) — but we will experience it often.

How long, O Lord? — Psalm 35:17

This is one of many psalms of lament, sung by every Old Testament believer.  So this means every believer has times when they are praying for God’s deliverance, and longing for God’s deliverance, but are not yet seeing God’s deliverance.  When this happens we lament before Him, pour out our souls before Him, seek comfort in Him — and continue to cry out to Him.

We rejoice in hope of the glory of God — Romans 5:2

Here Paul says we will all have times when our hearts are full of joy as we think of seeing God’s glory face to face (1Cor 13:12; 1Pet 1:13).

We rejoice in our sufferings — Romans 5:3

Paul goes on to say we will all experience joy in our sufferings — because these sufferings produce hope.  This means they will cause us to see even more of God’s glory both now and in heaven — which is why we rejoice.

God’s love has been poured into our hearts — Romans 5:5

Paul assumes all his listeners have experienced times when they move from knowing that God loves them — to feeling His actual love for them poured into their hearts by the Spirit.  This is not our constant experience (Psalm 13:1; Psa 42:2) — but Romans 5:5 shows it is something we often experience.

So — how’s your heart?

Has this EKG shown that your heart is healthy?  Or is there cause for concern?

If it’s healthy — humbly thank God for His grace — and press in for more (Psalm 42:1-2).

If it’s not healthy — don’t be discouraged.

On the Cross Jesus purchased and secured everything needed to transform your heart.

And when God saved you, He started a work of changing your heart that He WILL complete (Phil 1:6).

So trust Him.  And pray over the above verses and pray over God’s promises, fighting the fight of faith.

As you do that — in His perfect time and way, God will increase the work of the Spirit in you, and your heart will be changed.

Why is this important?

It’s because heart-tastes of Jesus’ glory free us from sin so we abound in love for others —

And when we live this way, Jesus will be glorified as the Treasure of the Universe.

So don’t neglect your heart.

Comments?  Feedback?  Questions?

I’d love to hear them — leave a comment in the box below.  Thanks.

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(Picture is by bjearwicke on everystockphoto.)

Category: Strengthening Your Faith, The Work of the Spirit


2 Responses

  1. Bill Schuler says:

    Good stuff Steve!
    It’s very incouraging to know that we have affordable health insurance for our spirits. 🙂 I want to be heart healthy so Im taking the advice of the great physician and I’m changing my diet! I’ve started by greatly reducing my saturated fat intake (T.V.) And I’ve increased my fruits and vegetables (Gods word and prayer)The result: Less clogging of the arteries (the pipeline of Gods goodness) 🙂 I love your use of scripture to fight the fight of faith.

    • Steve Fuller says:

      Love your take-off on the medical analogy — less saturated fasts, more fruits and vegetables, less clogging of the arteries — I love it! Thanks for sharing, Bill.

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