Summary: God asks us to give to Him our hearts. God is not looking to have a place in your heart: He wants all of your heart. God is looking for wholehearted Christians. But what are the characteristics that give evidence of being a wholehearted Christian?
A Wholehearted Christian
“My son, give me your heart and let your eyes keep to my ways”
God asks us to give to Him our hearts. Joseph Stowell in his book, Fan The Flame, states that “Heart is used in Scripture as the most comprehensive term for the authentic person. It is the part of our being where we desire, deliberate, and decide. It has been described as “the place of conscious and decisive spiritual activity,” “the comprehensive term for a person as a whole; his feelings, desires, passions, thought, understanding and will,” and “the center of a person. The place to which God turns.” (Fan The Flame, J. Stowell, Moody, 1986, p. 13) God is not looking to have a place in your heart: He wants all of your heart. God is looking for wholehearted Christians. But what are the characteristics that give evidence of being a wholehearted Christian?
I. A Wholehearted Christian is one who desires and seeks God with their all
A. Psalm 119:2 “Blessed are they that keep his testimonies, and that seek him with the whole heart.”
B. A whole hearted Christian is one whose relationship with God is more important than anything.
C. Philippians 3:7-15 “But what things were gain to me, those I counted loss for Christ. Yea doubtless, and I count all things but loss for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord: for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and do count them but dung, that I may win Christ, And be found in him, not having mine own righteousness, which is of the law, but that which is through the faith of Christ, the righteousness which is of God by faith: That I may know him, and the power of his resurrection, and the fellowship of his sufferings, being made conformable unto his death; If by any means I might attain unto the resurrection of the dead. Not as though I had already attained, either were already perfect: but I follow after, if that I may apprehend that for which also I am apprehended of Christ Jesus. Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before, I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus. Let us therefore, as many as be perfect, be thus minded: and if in anything ye be otherwise minded, God shall reveal even this unto you.
D. A young woman in England many years ago always wore a golden locket that she would not allow anyone to open or look into, and everyone thought there must be some romance connected with that locket and that in that locket must be the picture of the one she loved. The young woman died at an early age, and after her death the locket was opened, everyone wondering whose face he would find within. And in the locket was found simply a little slip of paper with these words written upon it, "Whom having not seen, I love." Her Lord Jesus was the only lover she knew and the only lover she longed for. - The Best of R.A. Torrey
E. Far too many of approach God half heartedly with only a little desire for Him or halfheartedly wanting to hang on to God and the world.
F. If you don't get what you want, it is a sign either that you did not seriously want it, or that you tried to bargain over the price.—Rudyard Kipling
G. 1 Kings 18:21 “And Elijah came unto all the people, and said, ‘How long halt ye between two opinions? If the LORD be God, follow him: but if Baal, then follow him’. And the people answered him not a word.”
H. Psalms 73:25 “Whom have I in heaven but You? And there is none upon earth that I desire besides You.”
I. To love God wholeheartedly, we must be convinced that our only happiness is in Him alone. We cannot believe this until we renounce all other efforts at happiness. If we look to God to supply half our happiness, we can only love him with half our hearts. (William Law in Christian Perfection (a contemporary version by Marvin D. Hinten). Christianity Today, Vol. 36, no. 9.)
II. A Wholehearted Christian is one who is determined to live pleasing to God.
A. Psalm 119:2-3 “Blessed are they that keep his testimonies, and that seek him with the whole heart. They also do no iniquity; they walk in His ways.”
B. Experiencing a life-changing faith, having a close relationship with God and desiring to please God above all else are marks of a genuine belief in born-again Christians.