We are taking a break from our study in the Book of Mark and offer this daily devotional in the interim. We will resume our study of Mark after the first of the New Year.
Your Cheering Heart
“Rejoice, O young man, in your youth, . . . “ Ecclesiastes 11:9
It’s tough being young, especially being young and committed to following Jesus as Lord. The writer of Ecclesiastes understood and speaks of both the joy and the sorrow of the heart of a young believer.
There is a moment when the heart of a young person rejoices and begins to follow Jesus. Perhaps it is in a great worship service or some remarkable concert when the Holy Spirit is powerfully present and the young heart is filled with love and devotion to Jesus. But later comes the reality of the flesh and all its temptations. Every young Christian has this experience. It can be a special relationship when temptation is raging, or when the need to be accepted threatens to drive the young into compromise. It is at these moments the heart is filled with sorrow and a desire to break away.
When this occurs, Ecclesiastes demands you follow your cheering heart—the heart that is cheering your relationship and commitment to the Lord Jesus. The writer insists that the young must walk in the ways of the cheering heart and in the sight the cheering heart gives to your eyes. This is the way – walk in it!
It is a willful decision with two polar opposites demanding the control of your heart, and thus your heart, and thus your life.
At times, the decision is easy and you can put away the evil of your flesh, but at other moments, it can be the most difficult challenge of your life as a Christian. But the promise is certain – if you order sorrow away, it will leave and the cheering will return, for you have won another victory and decided again to follow Jesus as Lord of all your life.
The Spirit is the deepest part of you. It’s the engine of life, not always seen, but always felt and it cheers us on in the ways of God. It inspires confident living, directs decisions, and tells us to keep on running when we want to stop. The cheering of the spirit keeps us focused on what really matters. Don’t be distracted by distractions. Keep choosing His lordship over your life.
Are you listening to your cheering heart ? This is the way – walk in it!