When the Christian Heart Fails to Love the World

Thursday, April 3, 2008 | Labels: | |

Why is it that on some days a man does not feel the love for the world he ought too. It is almost as if a part of him has been cheated, and the rest of the world is not necessarily to blame, but it is unsatisfying to him, unable to be loved by him. This dilemma illustrates an interesting aspect of the human heart. There are times when the heart does not want to love anything within this world. That which is at one time important can lose its importance.

Is it some dilemma of the heart that leads to this thought process? Is there something wrong with the spirit that leads one to stop loving the world as they usually do? Even amidst this terrible feeling of not being loving, one finds themselves faced with the predicament that they ought to be loving. It is such a difficult place to have the heart be... To desire to love the world but at the same time feel no love for it.

Feelings have an amazing way of driving an individuals doubts. I often wonder if feelings had not existed if there would be no confusions of truths. A world without feeling, however, is an empty world. Without feeling, there is no desire to love because often the desire to love brings about beautiful feelings within the human heart. It is almost as if we are creatures designed to get something out of everything we choose to do... almost as if the only purpose of our doing good is to obtain goodness for ourselves. We carry within ourselves an inherent selfishness.

Is it a dangerous idea to believe at particular times in our lives that we desire only to love the world because loving the world makes us feel good? What a shallow love this is indeed. True love does not exist solely on feelings, it transcends beyond that to one of deep commitment and conviction. So if one finds themselves not feeling their love for the world on one day, it would be unwise to assume that they do not love the world. It is only illustrative of their commitment to their love for it being challenged, and through that challenge, their choices can illustrate whether they really love the world or not.

As feelings can be so deeply deceptive, they can also be amazingly illustrative of the weaknesses of our sinful heart. In God's incredible design, he built into our hearts the ability to use feelings to discern and test our commitment and love for him, the world, and those around us. We are smitten with tests on those days where our feelings are in question, and when those feelings are in question our response to them define where our heart really is.

Worship is not the simple act of following God when the feelings are there, worship is the act of following God despite the existence of those feelings. What an amazing system that was designed for the hearts of men to discern where the truths of their hearts really lie. Can a man truly love God if their feelings are never tested with the doubts of this world? Can a man ever really understand the need for God without those doubts? It is these days of lost love for the world and our lack of caring that illustrate just how sinful and useless the heart is without God. It gives a portrait of how the heart would be completely separated from God's existence.

"We know that the law is spiritual, but I am not spiritual since sin rules me as if I were its slave. I do not understand the things I do. I do not do what I want to do, and I do the things I hate. And if I do not want to do the hated things I do, that means I agree that the law is good. But I am not really the one who is doing these hated things; it is sin living in me that does them. Yes, I know that nothing good lives in me—I mean nothing good lives in the part of me that is earthly and sinful. I want to do the things that are good, but I do not do them. I do not do the good things I want to do, but I do the bad things I do not want to do. So if I do things I do not want to do, then I am not the one doing them. It is sin living in me that does those things.

So I have learned this rule: When I want to do good, evil is there with me. In my mind, I am happy with God's law. But I see another law working in my body, which makes war against the law that my mind accepts. That other law working in my body is the law of sin, and it makes me its prisoner. What a miserable man I am! Who will save me from this body that brings me death? I thank God for saving me through Jesus Christ our Lord!

So in my mind I am a slave to God's law, but in my sinful self I am a slave to the law of sin."

- Romans 7:14-25

Craig Chamberlin