I love our new neighborhood. Besides looking like it was clipped out of a Norman Rockwell book of paintings, its holiday spirit is high. In fact it’s so high, that a number of houses are still donning their Christmas lights, wreaths, holiday bows and I saw a happy ole Christmas snowman on someone’s porch yesterday. My husband reminded me that it’s because it’s too cold to go outside and take them down. SO TRUE.
But for most homes, the Christmas lights were taken down and quickly replaced with my favorite holiday decor – hearts. Hearts, hearts, hearts. Heart wreaths on almost every front door with a few homes draped with heart-shaped lights! Those are my favorite. I got caught up in the spirit and bought my first heart-shaped wreath for my door. Hard to resist the SIX DOLLAR FREE SHIPPING deal from Oriental Trading.
Our front porch is bedazzled now – or as bedazzled as it’s going to get. Around here, we not only love the new heart on our door but we love little hearts in our bellies, too. And in case you missed my super easy valentine’s craft post, then you know that I represent the mom who wants to do it all but really knows she can’t. So I makes these cookies to add to the celebration.
Yum. But then I serve them on a fancy platter in a white-pink pattern, and voila, no one cares how they were made. They are just hot and ready to eat.
So in the spirit of Valentines Day, I want to take a moment for us (or for me) to stop thinking only of what kind of heart-shaped cookie I can eat today – and look a little more deeply into my real heart. The one that beats, keeping me alive, the one serving an enormous purpose on a day-to-day basis.
I love the Bible and its attention to the heart. How it acknowledges the heart as one of the most important organs in your body that guides us in so many ways. Scripture speaks to almost every possibility of the heart: how it’s used to love, who it should love most, how it guides our thoughts, our words, how it can be deceitful. Its need for protection. The Bible speaks to the broken hearted, and it is clear, the desires of our heart are not unknown to a loving God.
I wonder if you know what’s going on in your own heart?
Love is a mysterious thing – if you ask me. How does an organ dictate so much about feelings? Scientists – please chime in. I imagine my anatomy looking like three strings: one tying my heart to my brain, one from my brain to my mouth, and one from my mouth back to my heart. A little triangle, working together to produce the same thing.
For out of the overflow of his heart his mouth speaks. Luke 6:45b
Do you see that in your own life? Is there a direct correlation between what you say and what you feel?
Or are you perhaps hiding a little of what is in your heart, to appear a certain way?
Even in laughter the heart may ache… Proverbs 14:13
Are you the one in need of a pick-me-up?
Hope deferred makes the heart sick… Proverbs 13:12
Or are you the one who can give away some encouragement?
A cheerful look brings joy to the heart, and good news give health to the bones. Proverbs 15:30
Do you wonder if anyone knows or even cares about your heart?
Search me, O God, and know my heart… Psalms 139:23a. . . Luke 16:15 says “but the Lord knows your heart.”
Or maybe you are feeling a little more Janis Joplin a little less Bible today:
So, come on, come on, come on, come on – yeah, TAKE IT! Take another little piece of my heart now baby.
Or the Beatles has you swimming in a sea of hearts:
All you need is love, love. Love is all you need.
Or the J. Geils Band just says it so clearly:
You know, this week may be a normal week for some, a deliriously in love week for others, or it may leave you feeling a little alone. I think it’s wise to take a look into our own hearts just to peek in and see what is in there. To sit still for a moment, without the distractions that are typically surrounding us and listen. And try to listen to your own words throughout the day, to hear what you are dwelling on. Decide if your heart is invested in the right order or if it needs to be reprioritized. If you are the one who needs a little love – tell someone. If you are the one with the cookie jar full of hearts – share it with those around you.
And if you have that aching feeling that you want a love deeper than any that you know or have ever known, remember that God is love. Jesus laid his life down for you. And by definition, that is the kind of love that is endless and runs deep. Read 1 John. So much love and light there.
Just think about it.
Now go make those cookies and give ’em to someone you love.
Happy heart week. xoxo