We often hear the expression “willing heart” when people are talking about following Jesus. I wonder what a “willing heart” actually means. If you look up the word in a Thesaurus you will find that it will bring up lots of words to describe ‘willing’ – eager, keen, enthusiastic, ready, prepared, agreeable, game, helpful, cooperative, happy and many more.
When ‘willing’ is placed with ‘heart’ and applied to our journey with Christ it appears to describe in detail what God is looking for in each of us at various times in our lives. Wouldn’t it be amazing if we could apply these words to our faith? I would like to pose a few questions that we need to ask ourselves so that we can state that we have a “willing heart”.
Some of these words we may have often experienced as new Christians but they tend to be put on the back burner as the years pass. They are: ‘eager’, ‘keen’, ‘enthusiastic’ and also ‘game’.
Are we still eager to share our faith story with others? Are we keen to read the bible every day and are we enthusiastic in our praise and in the ministries that we have been given? And if we are then would we dare to be game and take on whatever God is showing us to do?
Next is the word ‘prepared’. Luke states in Chapter 12:34-36 (NIV)
“For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also“.
Be dressed ready for service and keep your lamps burning, like servants waiting for their master to return from a wedding banquet, so that when he comes and knocks they can immediately open the door for him.
Are we prepared each day to do our Lord’s bidding? Are we eager to answer His call at a moment’s notice?
Finally, we come to the words that should encompass all that we do when looking after God’s flock. ‘Helpful’, ‘cooperative’, and ‘happy’. These are gentle words and I loved it when ‘happy’ appeared and so I made it the final word because that is what we become when we help others and cooperate with those who make a difference in this world in God’s name.
Do we help those who unable to help themselves and do we work alongside others to bring about justice in God’s name?
Loving and Compassionate God, we can only be truly happy when we have a willing heart. Help us to open up our hearts so that we may let your light shine through to all that we meet. May we always be willing to listen and obey your call. We ask this knowing that you wish us to have life in abundance. Amen.
By Terry Stead