The following, entitled "Inventory of the Heart," offers a thorough look into the deep recesses of one's heart. Are you brave enough to consider its thoughts? Are you big enough to make the changes where necessary? I CHALLENGE YOU TO LOOK UP EACH VERSE and seriously consider whether or not you are living up to what God requires from the Christian. Perhaps you'll think this list absurd and its content unattainable. Those who truly know Christ as Saviour can read a list like the following and completely agree with all of it; those who truly know Christ will want to comply with each and every subject to the very best of their ability...
Matthew 6:12-14 Is there anyone against whom you hold a grudge? Anyone you have not forgiven? Anyone you hate? Anyone you do not love? Are there any misunderstandings that you are unwilling to forget? Is there any person against whom you are harboring bitterness, resentment, or jealousy? Is there anyone you dislike to hear praised or well spoken of? Do you allow anything to justify a wrong attitude toward another?
Matthew 6:33 Is there anything in which you have failed to put God first? Have your decisions been made after your own wisdom and desires, rather than by seeking and following God’s will? Do any of the following in any way interfere with your surrender and service to God: ambition, pleasures, loved ones, friendships, desire for recognition, money, or your own plans?
Mark 16:15 Have you failed to seek the lost for Christ? Have you failed to witness consistently with your mouth for the Lord Jesus? Has your life not shown to the lost the Lord Jesus?
John 13:35 Are you secretly pleased over the misfortune of others? Are you secretly annoyed over the accomplishments or advancements of another? Are you guilty of any contention or strife? Do you quarrel, argue, or engage in heated discussions? Are you a partaker in any division or party spirit? Are there people whom you deliberately slight?
Acts 20:35 Have you robbed God by withholding His due of time, talents, and tithe (a tenth of your income)? Have you failed to support mission work in prayer? In offerings?
I Cor. 4:2 Can others depend on you so that you can be trusted with responsibilities in the Lord’s work? Are you allowing your emotions to be stirred for the things of the Lord but doing nothing about it?
I Cor. 6:19-20 Are you in any way careless with your body? Do you fail to care for it as the temple of the Holy Spirit? Are you guilty of intemperance in eating or drinking? Do you have any habits which are defiling to the body?
I Cor. 10:31 Do you take the slightest credit for anything good about you, rather than giving the glory to God? Do you talk of what you have done rather than of what Christ has done? Are your statements mostly about “I”? Are your feelings easily hurt? Have you made a pretense of being something that you are not?
Ephesians 3:20 Are you self-conscious rather than Christ-conscious? Do excuses of inferiority keep you from attempting things you should in service for God?
Ephesians 4:28 Do you underpay? Do you do as little as possible in your work? Have you been careless in the payment of your debts? Have you sought to evade payment of your debts? Do you waste your time? The time of others?
Ephesians 4:31 Do you complain? Find fault? Do you have a critical attitude towards any person or anything? Are you irritable or cranky? Do you carry hidden anger? Do you get angry? Become impatient with others? Are you ever harsh or unkind?
Ephesians 5:16 Do you listen to unedifying radio or television programs? Do you read unworthy magazines? Do you partake in worldly amusements? Do you seek satisfaction from any questionable source? Are you really satisfied with Christ?
Ephesians 5:20 Have you neglected to thank Him for all things—the seemingly bad as well as the good? Have you virtually called God a liar by doubting His Word? Do you worry? Is your spiritual temperature based on your feelings or on the facts of God’s Word?
Philippians 1:21 Are you consumed with the cares of this life? Is your conversation or heart joyful over things rather than the Lord and His Word? Does anything mean more to you than living for God and pleasing Him?
Philippians 2:14 Do you ever by word or deed seek to hurt someone? Do you gossip? Do you speak unkindly concerning people? Do you carry prejudice against true Christians because they do not see everything exactly like you do?
Philippians 4:4 Have you sought to be pleasing to Him in all things? Do you carry any bitterness toward God? Have you complained against Him in any way? Have you been dissatisfied with His provision for you? Is there in your heart any unwillingness to obey God fully? Do you have any reservations as to what you would or would not do concerning anything that might be His will? Have you disobeyed some direct leading from Him?
Colossians 3:9 Do you engage in empty and unprofitable conversation? Do you ever lie? Do you ever exaggerate? Cheat? Steal? Carefully consider...do you overcharge?
II Tim. 2:22 Do you have any personal habits that are not pure? Do you allow impure thoughts about the opposite sex to stay in your mind? Do you read that which is impure or suggestive of unholy things? Do you indulge in any unclean entertainment? Are you guilty of the lustful look?
Hebrews 10:25 Are you irregular in attendance at services? Have you neglected or slighted daily or private prayer? Have you neglected God’s Word? Do you find the Bible and prayer uninteresting? Have you neglected daily family devotions?
Hebrews 13:17 Do you hesitate to submit to leaders in the church or elsewhere? Are you lazy? Do you rebel at requests given to you to help in the work of the Gospel? Are you easily corrected or are you stubborn and unteachable in spirit?
James 1:27 Have you allowed yourself to become “spotted” by the world? Is your manner of dress pleasing to God? Do you neglect to pray about the things you buy?
James 4:6 Do you feel that you are doing quite well as a Christian? That you are not so bad? That you are good enough? Do you insist on having your own way? Do you insist on your rights?
James 4:11 Have you dishonored the Lord and hindered His work by criticizing His servants? Have you failed to pray regularly for your pastor or other spiritual leaders? Are you more concerned about what people will think than what will be pleasing to God? If you have been honest and true in the matter of admitting your sins, then you are ready for God’s cleansing. Sins that are admitted are sins that are confessed. Remember these three things:
1. If the sin is against God, confess it to God, and make things right with God.
2. If the sin is against another person, confess it to God and make the sin right with the other person.
3. If the sin is against a group, confess it to God and make it right with that group. If there is full confession, there will be full cleansing.
Would God lie about forgiveness? I John 1:9
Does God want you to be filled with the Spirit? Eph. 5:18
Then can we trust God to fill us if we ask with a clean heart? I John 5:14-16
Oh yes we can!
Happy New Year!