I will run in the way of your commandments when you enlarge my heart. Psalm 119:32For years I've thought about that verse. And I ask myself, "What does that mean? What does it mean to enlarge my heart?"
Well, I guess if my heart needs to be enlarged, it must mean that my heart's too small.
And I guess that's me as well...I was born with a small heart, a heart that only has room for me and my own needs. Ironically, that small heart is so small that it doesn't even realize it's too small. It thinks everything is just fine.
And, try as I might, I can't change my heart, can't make myself love people, be unselfish, or anything good. I'm unable to enlarge or improve my own heart.
But God's Word says:
And I will give you a new heart, and a new spirit I will put within you. And I will remove the heart of stone from your flesh and give you a heart of flesh. Ezekiel 36:26It's He, my God, who gives me a new heart, makes my heart of stone into a heart of flesh.
And God's methods aren't a mystery. His ways are obvious.
First, I hear God's Word. His commandments expose my heart and my guilt. His Word convicts me and shows me how black and how small my heart is.
For the word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart. Hebrews 4:12And once I'm in the throws of guilt and despair...
Then, thru His Word and preaching, He shows me His love...His love for me and my puny, hard heart.
But God demonstrates His own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Romans 5:8And somehow, someway, in hearing God's Word, in knowing His love...that heart of mine becomes a heart of flesh. He enlarges it, so that it actually starts to feel, to hurt, and to love. My heart grows beyond itself, and has room for others.
Beloved, if God so loved us, we also ought to love one another. No one has ever seen God; if we love one another, God abides in us and his love is perfected in us. 1 John 4:11–12And it's that heart, that's enlarged by God, that's able to love and serve others, and it begins to do just that.