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Posts Tagged ‘Sunday’s coming’

A Pure Heart painted by Jan Oliver

Is it true? Do the pure of heart recognize pure motives in another person? Or, even more mysterious, can the pure find something pure in anyone? Is it another way of thinking about the “sacred other?” How sorrowful, then, to dwell in the opposite world, a type of hell surely, where nothing is pure.

Titus 1:15
To the pure, all things are pure, but to those who are corrupted and do not believe, nothing is pure. In fact, both their minds and consciences are corrupted.

I was quite moved today while listening to the audio book of Cutting for Stone by Abraham Verghese when a minor character, Deepak, a 5th year resident doctor who has been close to completing his residency many times but has, time after time, been cut out by the system, speaks to his young intern, Marion. Finally, circumstances take a turn for Deepak, his first real hope in ten years that things will work out. He shares his long-standing belief that good does triumph over evil, that hard work and honesty and integrity do prevail along with patience and long suffering. He is so clearly a good man, a humble man who loves his work and believes in this “power of good.” He is of the pure heart variety, and I found him remarkably drawn, this character in the book felt real and knowable.

The pure of heart do suffer because of those who do not recognize them. Those pure-hearted ones are taken advantage of; they are often swept aside; they are maligned in their silence.

In our small town, it is a political season in which a mayor will be elected (or re-elected) and a city council re-populated with new or old faces. The rhetoric is flying and I wonder, are there pure hearts among them? Can I still my own heart long enough to recognize them? Can I get past my own judgmentalism and pre-conceived notions? Can I tap into my small spot of purity where the Holy Spirit dwells within and where truth can be uncovered?

I am also in the vortex of another political storm, where integrities are coming into question, where truths are unclear, where memories have become short-sighted. And today, I realized, sorrowfully, that my friends may continue to be maligned because corrupted hearts may not recognize them. And despite the purity I can see; it does not give revelation to others. At least, for now. But like my sweet doctor Deepak, a time will come when purity of heart and motive will emerge. I must believe that too.

Just yesterday, I discussed with new friends how we cannot know the ways of God’s hand. What may appear as defeat on the outside, may be victory within. What plays out in sorrow now, may reveal a greater glory later. I must hold to this understanding.

After all, Jesus modeled this same scenario. He was betrayed, wrongly sentenced, and crucified. Most of his followers were broken and dismayed. Their cause for good appeared broken. They looked at the circumstances in 3-D only, not knowing that other dimensions were turning upside down. They allowed the corrupt to veil their hope.

We must stand fast. The pure of heart must hold to this: Sunday’s coming.

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