Reorienting Your Heart – Journey Towards Easter Day 1

READ John 12:1-11

REFLECT When was the last time you judged someone else’s actions? Over the last two years, I’m sure I’m not the only one who has viewed others’ actions as foolish, careless, or too cautious. When your heart is focused on anything other than Jesus, you place yourself in a seat that only Jesus deserves.

In John 12, we see two examples of this. The first is Judas whose practical heart distracted him from treasuring Jesus as Mary did. Jesus acknowledges Mary’s extravagant sacrifice as right and good because her heart was focused on Him. 

The second is the group of leading priests who desired to be venerated above anyone else. Instead of trying to get to know Jesus, or recognizing His authority, they saw Jesus as competition, challenging their place in the community. 

How easy it is to think more highly of ourselves than we should.

John Stott, a theologian, once pointed out that sin is substituting ourselves for God, while salvation is God substituting Himself for us. 

Jesus was right in front of these men, and they missed Him because they were focused on being in charge, in control. Their priorities were out of whack. Their hearts needed reorienting. 

Your heart needs reorienting, too. 

Sometimes, this means putting your own desires aside, as good or right as they may feel in the moment. Jesus is never trying to keep you from things; he’s always trying to lead you to more. Jesus wants your heart so that He can give you what’s best. Even if it’s not what you expect or think you want. He designed you and knows what’s best for you.

As you fast and pray, submit yourself to God. Trust that He wants to give you “infinitely more than you might ask or think” (Ephesians 3:20). In surrendering your heart to Him, He will give you new desires. This is good news, and this is why seasons of fasting are healthy. 

Our hope is that this week, we will collectively recalibrate our hearts to long for Jesus even more – not just for ourselves, but for our families and neighbours as well. That as we journey towards Easter, we would be praying for opportunities to invite our friends and family to experience Jesus, too.

BOTTOM LINE Jesus wants your heart so that He can give you what’s best. 

LIVE As you begin these four days of fasting and praying, ask God to reveal what you are prioritizing over Him. As you long for that which you’ve given up in order to focus on Jesus, let it serve as a reminder of all He gave up for you.

PRAY God, I pray that you would use this week to reorient my heart. Focus my heart on you. I confess that I often want to take control of my life and assume the position of authority, rather than put you in the place of honour. I want that to change this week. In the moments where fasting is a challenge today, remind me that this is an opportunity to connect with you and to reevaluate the desires in my life. Move in my life today and in the lives of those around me who don’t know you. Specifically, I bring ___________(NAME) to you and ask that you would ________________. In your name, Amen.

If you’re not yet sure who you are going to invite to Easter, pray and ask God to show you who to invite to hear about Jesus.  

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