“Take care that your hearts aren’t dulled by drinking parties, drunkenness, and the anxieties of day-to-day life. Don’t let that day fall upon you unexpectedly, like a trap. It will come upon everyone who lives on the face of the whole earth. Stay alert at all times, praying that you are strong enough to escape everything that is about to happen and to stand before the Human One.” -Luke 21:34-36
Jesus spent the first half of Holy Week teaching in the Temple. He concludes his teaching with this gem: keep your hearts shiny! He warns about getting hearts that have the shine worn plumb off of them by too much drinking or too much worry. He wants us to stay awake in our spiritual lives. He wants us to be ready to stand before him at any time, ready to say “Here I am, Lord!” He doesn’t want our lives to be all crusted over with regret and numbness and fear so that we can barely rise up to meet the demands of the day. He wants us to be bright and clear-eyed, expectant about how he is at work.
So what dulls your heart more? Is it the drinking or the worry? Do you need help toning down either? Now’s the time. What joy might you and I be missing because we keep letting things take the shine off of our hearts?
I get a reminder of this shiny-ness on a regular basis. Our church hosts a preschool, and I lead chapel once a week. One little boy, whenever we sing “He’s Got the Whole World in His Hands,” is always the one to take on an extra special ending. We’ve sung it all, about the world in God’s hands, and the itty bitty babies in God’s hands, and you and me sister, in God’s hands. Then this little guy, when everyone else is finished with this song, everytime he will bust out with a big finale: “He’s Got the Whoooole Wooooorld In. HIS. HANDS!!!!” That, my friends, is a heart not yet dulled. May we and the Holy Spirit knock some dust off our hearts today so we are ready to stand with Jesus on Sunday in resurrection joy.