High River United Church of High River, Alberta


Let Your Heart Lead

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I wonder… what is the state of your heart? What’s in there? What’s that heart-territory like right now? I suspect that if we move out of our heads just a bit, and venture into our hearts we might notice all sorts of things not unlike the ingredients of a Christmas cake batter. I bet there’s joy and sadness, some loneliness maybe? Or, worry and alarm as another COVID variant circles the globe? Maybe this territory of the heart feels two-sizes too small, or perhaps full of contentment. One thing I know is that we would all do better if we lived from our heart more than we do. Even though many of us prefer to live in our heads—I mean that’s where we can think things through and be rationale. But it’s also the place where we argue and convince ourselves that we’re right and others aren’t. I suppose there’s a “season” for that, but at the end of the day our thinking can easily be all about us. Don’t get me wrong, I am all for mindful intelligence and discovery. I’m all over that. But… I am also aware that head-thinking when devoid of gifts from the heart can quite easily become limited to self-thinking. My point? Live from the heart, too. Let the heart lead us beyond ourselves.


The Christmas narrative is all about the heart. God’s heart provides love in the most mysterious and incarnate way. Jesus is born because Love is leading. When our hearts lead, it is Love that provides us with endless provisions of wisdom and compassion. For that reason alone, our hearts are precious worth protecting. In fact, the Apostle Paul says, “…The peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus” (Phil.4:7). I appreciate that God’s peace keeps my precious heart safe! God’s peace helps my heart be well so that it can do what it does best… love.


Living from our heart—from the place protected by God’s peace which passes all understanding that is, the place which goes well past our thinking capacity—is what the Christmas narrative is all about. The invitation is to live from our heart and, to live into our heart. I think we need to tend to this practice and Christmas is the ideal time to do it. To live Christmas Love is to let our selves be led into Love and then naturally into loving others. God’s peace which protects the heart and mind, is what helps our hearts be at rest and at the same time available to love.


The heart moves us well beyond our fixations on any kind of polarizing thinking and instead leads us into the care and love for ourselves and others. It invites us to be compassionate, to be always mindful of the needs of others because we love. When love leads, it is not all about me. In God’s love there is no “them” or “us”. In fact, when the heart leads, personal needs often take a secondary role so that someone else can benefit from the heart’s compassion. Love does come with a sacrificial cost. The heart compels us to transcend what we think we deserve so that we can provide for the well-being of someone else.


Just like fashioning a Christmas cake, this takes some mixing. We mix in our needs and then add in the needs of others. We mix in our joy but allow for a little sadness. This is the work of a loving heart—mixing in, creating room, adding gentleness and wisdom. And the peace of God which passes all understanding protects the heart and mind and allows room for us to ground ourselves in love—a love that is a gift from God, cherished by God, born of God, and given freely by God however we understand God. Love supports our maturation as people of faith. Love compels us to be led by our heart.


And so, I wonder as we wander through Advent and Christmas… what is the state of your heart? What’s it like in there… right now? Does it need some of God’s Peace? Might you be led by your heart?

David Robertson © 2021



Christmas Cake

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123 MacLeod Trail S.W. High River, Alberta.

(403) 652-3168


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