My Heart's Not In It

Featuring Branon Dempsey Posted on October 8, 2008

I remember waking up for school, zipping into my clothes and dashing off to the bus stop. My thoughts along the way told me that I did not want to be late, yet I did not want to go to class. First period was science at 7:40am. Arrrrgh! I did not feel like having my brain squeezed and stretched, only to become a cerebral plastic man. Coasting through the morning with my white powdered donuts and chocolate milk was so much more appealing. You know, going through the motions is much easier. Then the all too familiar pop quiz would rear its head. Guess what? The test wasn’t on the color, maker and distributor's name of my packaged treats. By the time I spelled my name on the form, I lost all conciseness. And yes, even drooled a bit. Suddenly, I found myself in Dumbville and missed the last ride out. By the time I got home after the long day of I-don’t-what-to-do, my mom asks me how my day went. Before, I could elude the subject of my science class experience, she inquired if there were any tests? You know, it’s really funny how teachers and parents talk about you until you are the last one to find out! I was busted. Ok, a show of hands to indicate who’s been here before. That figures. I don’t feel alone and neither should you!

The truth is, I was a really good student. I actually graduated on an advanced degree plan apart from the strategic executive summary of Dolly Madison donuts. The action of my teacher flagging down my parents was a truth telling fact. I was not being my normal self. Even more so, my heart was not in it. During that period of my life, I was facing tough measures of depression and hurt. Events from my past childhood in combination with my inability to move ahead was costing my emotional health and mental balance.

It is far too easy to let past events imprison you. Events can be simply expressed in day-to-day motions, where your heart is not in it. On the other side of the island, depression can manifest itself in peculiar ways. Simple things become a task, routine becomes draining and the idea of fun is less than desirable. What’s even more easy to feel? God is far away, or maybe we feel that we are far away from God.

Remember when your favorite pet or a friend that you knew, had a furry family friend that was hit by a car? For me, it was devastating. Our first reaction was to find and rescue our pet, while placing our hands around them for comfort. The animal’s first reaction? To run, hide and bite.

When our heart is not in it, what ever it may be, it’s easy to bite the people we love and even God. Unlike animals, we have the ability to reason and process. More times than some, this is harder in the moment. Usually the people we are close to are often the same ones to first experience our bites. This comes out in the form of emotions, excuses and blame, we've seen this in the Garden.

Whenever I feel that my heart is not in it, down from my recent/past events and/or far away from God, I am only human to experience these emotions. But God...He is closer than we realize. He is stronger than our weaknesses. He our shelter in the storm.

Have you cried out? That’s right, cried out to God in the midst of pain. Releasing our pain has a great deal in our ability to process. Like a fresh wound, it needs to bleed, in essence this is what it means to grieve. No doubt, we don’t like feeling pain, nor do we want others to know our struggles. So why do we hide from God? Maybe because we feel like that poor little animal - injured and helpless. Think about the Garden again.

We walk together on this road, wearing different shoes but towards the same destination.The Bible says that in every way we're troubled but not crushed, frustrated but not in despair (2Cor. 4.8). We have hope, which is why we are not crushed nor in despair. It is a tragedy for those who have no one to help them up. For those in a relationship with Jesus Christ, we carry the love, rescue and comfort of God. We can strive all our lives to put our hope in a man or substance. Yet this is false hope, that will never, never yield Life that brings true healing, fulfillment and peace. This kind of fulfillment God gives never runs dry and never fades. Everything else in life is temporary and futile. It is amazing to be loved by God, who comforts us in all our tribulations (2Cor. 1.4). He is the God of all comfort and life.

When you feel like your heart is not in it, or far away, this is when He is the closest. Let Him find you. Where you are. Just like playing hide and seek when we were kids; He will find you if you ask Him to. You have everything to gain and nothing to lose. May the God of all comfort be with you now. It’s my prayer for the both of us that we are found in the canopy of His care.

“This poor man cried, and the LORD heard him And saved him out of all his troubles.”
- Ps. 34.6

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