But the Lord said to Samuel, “Do not look at his appearance or his stature, because I have rejected him. Man does not see what the Lord sees, for man sees what is visible, but the Lord sees the heart.”
1 Samuel 16:7
It takes heart to play sports. Coaches fire up their teams by saying, “Go out there and play with all your heart. Leave it all on the field!” Skills and talent are important, but playing with heart separates the great athletes from the good ones. When my daughter would play her basketball games, I pound my hand on my heart. It is my “secret” sign to encourage her to play with heart. Heart is all about drive, passion and desire.
The Bible talks about the heart all the time -- over 540 times! The Lord even told Samuel that He looks at the heart, not the external stuff. God looks at the internal stuff – the heart stuff. Most of us know what it means to give our all on the athletic field, but do we know what it means to give our all when it comes to loving God.
Over the past 10 years, my heart has been challenged after spending time with hundreds of international leaders in dozens of countries and hearing how they are loving God at full strength. Through trails, struggles and pain, they have persevered to always love God with everything they have. My heart for God has grown as I have witnessed first-hand how they serve the Lord.
Here are five things I have learned from them when it comes to loving God with all your heart, soul, mind and strength:
H – HUNGRY Heart. There is always a passion for the Word of God, prayer, worship and fellowship. They have shown me that they hunger for hours with God not just minutes!
E – EXPECTING Heart. They expect great and mighty things from a great and mighty God. They ask God for more. They yearn for God to show up and move in supernatural ways.
A – ABUNDANT Heart. Hearts are full of God’s love and it is overflowing with thankfulness. They are generous and bless others with the little that they have.
R – REAL Heart. They have a HOT heart (honest, open and transparent). There is an authenticity they have that is beautiful and attractive – never trying to be someone they aren’t.
T – TEACHABLE Heart. They have tender and teachable hearts. Not a “know-it-all” attitude rather “teach-it-to-me” attitude.
My heart for the Lord has grown because of leaders from around the world showing me what it means to love God with all your heart. Let God grow your heart for more of Him.
"Lord, make our hearts soft and sensitive to Your leading. We hunger for You. Help us to expect awesome things from an awesome God. Grant us an abundant heart that overflows with thankfulness. A real heart that is transparent. A teachable heart that is open all the time. Amen.”