What is the condition of your heart?
Today’s Scripture reading comes from Genesis 9:16, quoting from the NASB:
“When the bow is in the cloud, then I will look upon it, to remember the everlasting covenant between God and every living creature of all flesh that is on the earth.”
Not all covenants are unrestricted, but God’s covenant with Noah was unconditional. God keeps His covenant independent of man’s obedience. God will do what He says He will do—this covenant with man is, in fact, one-sided. After nearly twelve months of water completely covering the earth, God’s wrath was satisfied. He cleansed the earth and purged wicked man from it. Though God cleansed the earth of man, He did not cleanse man’s heart. Why?
God is after something here. Man’s free will love and obedience was his desire in the garden and in giving his commands to Israel through Moses. Loving obedience to God is within man’s reach. Noah found favor in God’s eyes, as one who was righteous and without blame. Whatever motivated God’s covenanting with man must also inspire His love for man. When we choose God, He is pleased. God did not command Noah’s worship or his burnt offering upon returning to dry land, but God was pleased to receive his worship and was soothed by its pleasant aroma.
God desires our unprovoked worship and obedience. God absolutely loves it when we turn to Him and worship Him with a heart that says: “Not my will, but your will be done.” God initiates unqualified covenant because though the “intent of man’s heart is evil,” not everyone lives out the evil intent—though provoked. For ten righteous men God spares a city. God is pleased with the heart of a righteous person.
What is the condition of your heart? When all around you succumb to evil intent, do you hold to the narrow way and find God’s favor? Being an effective leader is as much about having the right heart as following proven leadership practices. God covenants with man and He always keeps His Word.
Points to Ponder
Over the next week, here are 3 points to ponder during your personal time of reflection or with a small group or mentor.
- First, consider how you commit your ways to God.
- Second, how are you resisting when all around are caving to common cultural demands or political correctness?
- Third, keep doing the right thing, even when it is unpopular.