We are just entering a season where God’s people are beginning to grasp that His will can be found in the desires of our own hearts. That’s how we define a King. Traditionally, doing God’s business was always presumed to be sacrificing my will and picking up the cross of His will. That mentality sets us up for a lifetime of religious struggle that drains our spiritual vitality. The Kingdom of God is within you. We’re created in God’s image with specific unique gifts and talents for a specific assignment in the Kingdom. We’re already wired for our destiny. When we get in touch with our hearts, we find that synergism with the Kingdom, and we enter a new realm of fellowship with the father. Servants try to motivate, discipline and hold themselves accountable to operate outside their own hearts. We may start there as babes in Christ, but real maturity is finding the will of God in our own heart’s desires. It’s fun, it causes us to feel alive, and we can grow from one glory to the next for the rest of our lives into greater levels of fruitfulness.
Dreams do come true – When we ask people to describe the desires of their heart, with this concept in mind, I almost always get a mental answer on the first try instead of what’s really in the person’s heart – what God wrote. It’s easy to discern the difference between heart and head, prophetically. After seeing a few examples for right heart answers and wrong head answers, then anyone can do it… not hard. Here are a few of the categories of the “head answers” that we often hear.
“Why” (Someone else’s vision) – The first response we offer up is what we “think” we should be fulfilling in terms of someone else’s expectations. Servants pride themselves in obedience and sacrifice and accountability, and that’s all they have to offer others in terms of ministry: ministry which seems promising and fills our lives with activity, but ends with no lasting fruit. We can even take pride in immersing ourselves into that larger vision in a way that loses our own identity. We become so affiliated with the vision of the leader that is takes on “cult-like” aspects of exclusivity and self-righteousness. It inevitably ends in shipwreck, and the saddest thing is that the process can waste decades.
Our own hearts need to know the “why” behind what we do. When we offer up someone else’s “why” our hearts are left unfulfilled as is our personal destiny. When we get people to connect with their own heart, they become self-propelled into the Father, their destiny, and their ministry in a way that works for the rest of their lives. They hold themselves accountable out of a love for God, a love for what they do, and a love for the people to whom they minister. It’s “fruit that remains.”
I no longer call you servants, because a servant does not know his master’s business. Instead, I have called you friends, for everything that I learned from my Father I have made known to you. 16 You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you to go and bear fruit — fruit that will last. John 15:15-16 NIV
“Why” (My own Values) – The second thing we substitute for our own heart’s desire is our values – what we think we should do. It can even be our mental opinion of what God thinks we should do. The Bible instructs us not to violate our conscience (values) and not to trust them, either. Values are established by what we have been taught, our traditions, and our religious rules. That list of stuff is not necessarily right Biblically or practically, and it’s seldom aligned with our heart’s desire or God’s heart’s desires, either. In a nutshell, “values” are what we do when we don’t hear from God and we’re out of touch with our own heart’s desires. Values can be someone else’s script that has been imposed (indoctrinated) over our own heart. They eventually leave us empty, impersonal, and disconnected from people. Accountability only prolongs the agony.
My conscience is clear, but that does not make me innocent. It is the Lord who judges me. 1 Cor 4:4-5 NIV
How – When we are not connected with our heart, we can immerse ourselves in the “how” of life. We can spend all kinds of energy on implementing processes, improving our character, serving, and being generally busy making things happen… good works can be dead works if they are not our real assignment. The essence of this religious mindset is doing the wrong thing the right way. It can be spending our lives on second best instead of focusing on what is really in our hearts.
You know the commandments: ‘Do not murder, do not commit adultery, do not steal, do not give false testimony, do not defraud, honor your father and mother.’” 20 “Teacher,” he declared, “all these I have kept since I was a boy.” 21 Jesus looked at him and loved him. “One thing you lack,” he said. “Go, sell everything you have and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me.” Mark 10:19-21 NIV
What – When Jesus was crucified, Peter assumed that the dream was over, and went back to work as a fisherman. People without a connection to the dream God wrote in their hearts substitute their work or hobby to stay busy. These are nice people who have simply resigned from believing that God could use them to make a difference in the Kingdom. It can be religious, too: attendance, tithing, devotions, teaching, serving, and generally policing the activities of others. They are all activities clothed in well-meaning, and purported to have great importance to God, when in reality they are just a shallow surrogate in lieu of what is more deeply in our hearts. These same activities eventually drain the life out of us. We are not designed to sustain dead works for very long. Pharisees always run out of gas and money.
The real thing – How do we find our real heart’s desire in a way that connects with the desires in God’s heart? We have to give ourselves permission to dream and just imagine where we really want our lives to go. Few believers have a basis in theology to believe that something this good could be true, and there aren’t many examples to follow yet, either. However, it is the gospel of the Kingdom. It’s true. It’s practical and it’s fun. Operating out of your own heart’s desire has a very profound effect. It positions you to help others find their own heart’s desire. You become an example of how much fun it is to be a Christian. It feels like a jail break!
“The Spirit of the Lord is on me, because he has anointed me to preach good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners and recovery of sight for the blind, to release the oppressed, to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.” Luke 4:18-19 NIV