6 Ways to Have a Heart Like God

Today I have the privilege of introducing a blogger friend of mine Thomas Mason.  I have been encouraged by his open and honest writing style over the past months that I’ve known him.  Thomas blogs over at Living the Story and you can follow him on Twitter @thomas__mason.

 Who can figure God out?

First, He says His people need to be holy and set apart from sin. Then He says that a man who was an adulterer, murderer and admittedly poor father is a man after His own heart?

So which is it? How can both be true?

Yet they are. David is called a man after God’s own heart (1 Samuel 13:14; Acts 13:22). Yet David’s sins are clear, and they aren’t minor sins.

Perhaps we should ask just what it means to be a man (or woman) after God’s heart, for that is something for which we all should aspire. Obviously we’re not talking about sinless perfection. Paul seems to come the closest to this in the New Testament, who clearly wasn’t sinless, either — before or after salvation.

WHAT DOES IT MEAN TO BE A PERSON AFTER GOD’S OWN HEART?

I think it means having a heart the same as God’s. It is having our desires, our motives, our goals, our values and our priorities line up with God’s. It means loving what He loves, hating what He hates, and looking at life as He looks at life. It is having His biblical worldview of things in our minds and His love or righteousness and hate of sin in our hearts. You may see it differently, but in effect, it means being like Jesus. That is God’s ultimate goal for all of us — to be more Christ-like.

So can we be a person who is after God’s own heart but still sin? Of course we can. John clearly reminds us that we won’t stop sinning (1 John 1:8-10), and Paul experienced this in his life as well (Romans 7). That means that you and I can be after God’s own heart. After all, a heart is internal, so it’s not external actions God is most concerned about. Just being like God externally is hypocrisy and we know how God feels about that. But if our hearts beat with His heart, for the things His heart beats for, then we are after God’s own heart.

What a wonderful goal in life, what a worthy dream to follow, to have a heart like God. That should be the desire of each of us. What could be better than to have the mind of Christ and the heart of God?

How can we apply this to our life? What can we do to be more like David, a “man after God’s own heart”?

HERE ARE 6 WAYS TO HAVE A HEART LIKE GOD:

  1. We should acknowledge God as well as inquire of Him in all situations.
  2. We should fear, honor and reverence God and not treat Him or His grace as something common or unholy.
  3. We should trust God and not give in to fear.
  4. We should obey God with our whole heart, not just partial obedience or an outward showing.
  5. We should be careful in what we promise and do. If we are doing something out of obedience to God, we should not worry what others think. We should care more what God thinks.
  6. When we do fail, we need to be truly repentant, not just before men, but before God.

Honoring and obeying God should be the first thing we do, not the last thing we think of.

Photo Credit: jasminedelilah, Creative Commons

  • Pingback: 6 Ways to Have a Heart Like God | Living the Story()

  • I like this piece, Thomas. Even when we battle our flesh, maybe exactly because we battle our flesh, it shows our deepest core desire to honor our Father. We all fall and get picked back up. It should remind us of the perfect gift and redemption we have because of our Savior. With time we fail less and less. We are works in progress as long as we’re bound up in these soul cages.

    What a great goal to put forth! To be people after our Father’s heart. May we all adopt this mind and soul set. Nice! Thanks, Thomas. And thanks, Jeremy for hosting!

    • I absolutely love what you said: “With time we fail less and less. We are works in progress…” This is so true and it can hugely encourage us that when we do fail, that that is one less time that we will fail going forward. And yes, adopting a goal to be people after God’s own heart is certainly a worthy goal to work towards.

      Thanks for commenting with such uplifting words, Floyd.

    • Agreed, it is a great goal Thomas pointed out!

  • Thanks for hosting me as your guest, Jeremy.

  • Betty Draper

    I agree with your words and view of “having a heart like Jesus”. Because there is forgiveness in Jesus we can experience it when we do fail. And fail we will at times since we still walk around in our clothing of flesh. My husband always says a sign of maturity is how long it takes us when we do fail to confess, repent and get back in fellowship with the Father. Each time I have to do this process the more my love grows for Him who is the author of this process. Without the Holy spirit in me I cannot have a heart like Him. The H.S. makes it possible. Good post. Good points.

    • Your husband is right, confession really does play a large part in a Christian’s growth. I am especially thankful for the prayers of confession we say within a liturgical Anglican service. It reminds us of our imperfection and ultimately affirms our faith in the completed work of Christ. Thanks for sharing, Betty!

    • I like what you said about the space between our sin and confession being a sign of maturity. I’ve never considered that. But I can see the validity of that. Not only is confession to God of our wrong-doing necessary but confession to others is needed for accountability and community.

  • Pingback: When God Calls Us To An Adventure | Jeremy Riley: In a few words()