Is your heart broken? Is it locked? Is it torn? Is your heart firm? Is it pure? Your heart makes up who you are. What is in your heart leads you to make your decisions. From your heart stems your deepest desires. What are your deepest desires? Do you know?
I went to the bodies exhibit a couple of weeks ago. It is an exhibit of bodies that have been preserved to help people learn more about the human body. While I was there, I was able to see what smoking does to the lungs. It was a stark contrast when it came to a healthy lung versus a smoking lung. One was red and full of life while the other was black, hardened and shriveled.
Do we allow our hearts to become like the smoker’s lungs? Are we letting them shrivel and blacken with selfishness, stubbornness, and sin? Has your heart become hardened? Do you like it that way?
A Healthy Heart
Then what exactly is a healthy heart? Perhaps it is a heart that is pure. In Psalms 24: 3-4 it reads:
“Who shall ascend into the hill of the Lord? Or who shall stand in His holy place? He that hath clean hands, and a pure heart; who hath not lifted up his soul unto vanity, nor sworn deceitfully.”
What makes up a pure heart? I would venture to say that a pure heart comes as we are full of virtue and integrity. Coming to this point is possible. It just takes time and patience.
Healing Your Heart
A heart that needs healing is one that has become even just a little tainted. While both a heart that is just a little tainted and one that has become completely hardened and black can both become healthy and pure again, it is a lot easier when we catch ourselves with even a fleck of impurity in our hearts.
In order to heal our hearts, we must allow them to be broken. As we have a broken heart and a contrite spirit and turn to the Lord, He has mercy and compassion on us. He is the one who heals us.
I propose that if our hearts have even the smallest black on them, we have need to repent and turn unto our Savior. For a heart that has completely hardened this may take great sacrifice and faith. You can start by doing little things to begin to open up your heart and soften it. These little things can include things like seeing how you can trust other people, noticing the small ways the Lord is in your life every day, serving others, praying for softening, and reading the word of God to show you the right way.
As you read His word, you become aware of your hardened and blackened heart. There are people who do not recognize the need for a change.
It may be easier to allow yourself to continue on in bad habits. It may be extremely hard to work towards a pure heart or to give up things that are hardening your heart just as it is extremely difficult at times to quit smoking or to put aside an addiction and not come back to it.
Following my depression, I had an extremely hard time opening up my heart to others. Actually I always had my heart guarded in some way or another. But I recognized my hardening heart while recovering from depression.
I did not treat others the same way I used to. I was so afraid of giving too much of myself. I did not want my depression and self-destructive habits to come back into my life. I did not know, and actually still do not really know, how much I am able to give without losing track of my health spiritually, emotionally, mentally, and physically.
In a way I was becoming selfish, causing my heart to harden. As I prayed to my Father in Heaven and as I read His word, I was able to recognize my need for a softening of my heart through His Spirit. Quiet whisperings of the spirit come to help lead us back to our Father in Heaven.
Once I was brought to see this need, I began praying for help. I am still in that process. I believe that all of us are really in this process, because someone who has a completely pure heart is perfect. None of us are completely perfect. The Savior is our example of perfection.
He is there to help us purify our hearts. As we allow our hearts to be broken, by recognizing our faults, we allow the atoning power of the Savior to heal us.
What is the status of your heart at this time? What can you do to purify it more? What can you do now to help the Savior be able to purify it? Please do not sit and wait for something to happen. Move forward. Take a step towards a healthier heart by turning to the Savior of the World.