If hearts are not on your mind this week, perhaps they should
be! We are days away from that annual holiday of conversation
hearts, heart doilies, and hearts poured out in love. In the
United States, we also observe American Heart Month. With
heart disease the leading cause of death nationally, campaigns
this month encourage people to take steps toward improved
heart health by exercising, eating well, and ceasing smoking.

What makes a heart healthy and happy? The psalmist has
very different ideas than those just named. The heart, in ancient
Hebrew thought, was not an organ that pumped to keep us
alive, nor was it a sentimental symbol. The heart served not only
as the location of emotion but of persons’ entire personality,
intellect, desire, and will—everything that makes us who we
are. The heart was the seat of those intangibles that make us
human, encapsulating what makes us tick—the dynamic forces
that make us unique individuals. The heart served as the center
of all that we have been, are, and will be.

How does the knowledge above inform how you hear the
psalmist’s declaration that it is those who seek God with their
whole heart who are happy? The secret to a happy, healthy
heart—a self fully alive and on a life-giving course—comes from
centering our core being on the law of the Lord. The observance
of God’s decrees, statutes, commandments, ordinances, and
precepts shapes the deepest part of who we are and who we
become. How happy and healthy is your heart today?

God, help me follow you with my whole heart—not just to feel love toward you or think loving thoughts about you but to live in a way that shows I center my whole being on your desires for our world. Amen.

Rece las Escrituras usando Leccionario en Audio
Leer Matthew 5:21-37

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Leccionario Semanal
February 6–12, 2017
Resumen de la Escritura

How are Christians to understand and relate to the Jewish law? The text from Deuteronomy confronts Israel with a sharp choice: Follow the commandments of Yahweh or bow to the gods of the Canaanites. Choosing the law means choosing a way of life. Psalm 119 praises the Torah as God’s gift bestowed on Israel to be the authentic guide as to how life should be lived. Jesus becomes the authoritative interpreter of the Torah, the one who pushes beyond external behavior to a consistency between disposition and deed. Christians are invited by the text to be different and become what Paul describes as “spiritual people.”

Preguntas para la reflexión

• Read Deuteronomy 30:15-20. How do you go about choosing between the call of God and the call of the idols that surround you?
• Read Psalm 119:1-8. How has keeping God’s command- ments been a joyful experience in your life?
• Read 1 Corinthians 3:1-9. What do you consider to be the “milk” of the gospel versus the “solid food” of the gospel?
• Read Matthew 5:21-37. Which of the “But I say to you” teachings of Jesus surprise you the most? Why?

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