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Knowing God’s Will 6: Hearts on Course

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Proverbs 23:19 Listen, my son, and be wise, and set your heart on the right path. NIV11

Once, when I was a kid, my family went to church at a drive-in theater. My dad pulled up, put the speaker on his partially rolled-down window, and we quietly sat through the service. We were on vacation and it was Sunday. So as always, we were at “church.” I don’t remember missing church a single time during my childhood.

I don’t know that I’m quite as adamant about church attendance as my dad. (It’s a little hard to tell since my church-skipping opportunities are limited as a pastor.) However, I do appreciate his commitment to be faithful in a small thing and it reminds me of Daniel.

In Daniel’s time, the king issued a decree that for thirty days no one could pray to any man or god except the king, under penalty of death by lions. Instead praying privately, silently, or just taking a month off, Daniel went to his window and prayed right where everyone could see and hear him. He stayed his course.

These little commitments we make are important, as they help set our course. To stay on course, it is important to stick to such commitments. However, we must keep in mind that God’s desire is that our hearts are set on a course of following him. Daniel wasn’t just a man who was committed to pray three times a day. Rather, he was a person whose whole life was set on a course of following God. In the same way, God isn’t concerned about our Fitbit spirituality—consisting of our consecutive days of Bible reading or number of minutes of prayer. As helpful as such spiritual commitments can be, they aren’t the same as the bigger goal. God wants our hearts.

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