The purpose in a man’s heart is like deep water,Proverbs 20:5 (ESV)
But a man of understanding will draw it out
Recently, I had the privilege of serving on the team of writers who developed the All In Women’s Bible Study. The work submerged me into deep waters of my own heart in a way I did not fully anticipate. The Lord also took me deeper communally at the heart level in my relationships with others, especially fellow believers. Through the learning and wrestling, I have learned that heart work is helpful, hard, and healing.
Heart Work Is Helpful
Dealing with the deep caverns of my heart opened watertight bulkheads and allowed the Holy Spirit to have his way in me and through me. While helping develop this study, the Lord revealed unattended areas of my heart I did not even realize existed. If rock bottom has a basement, it is the deep cavern where I have locked up emotions. While I have prided myself on living my life as a wide-open book, the Lord revealed how I had shut down my emotions in order to “hold it together.” Traversing the deep waters in the basement of rock bottom helped me and humbled me by the power of the Holy Spirit.
Heart Work Is Hard
Opening watertight bulkheads to the flow of the Holy Spirit is hard work. As Pastor Mark often reminds us, “Hard is not bad; it is just hard.” When the Lord revealed this deep work in my heart that we needed to attend to together, I felt fear of the unknown and discovered a new space where I did not trust God or others. Fear of rejection and fear of walking through pain tempted me to abort the process. The work was hard, but in my weakness the Holy Spirit was strong, and I felt new spaces of freedom.
Heart Work Is Healing
Healing is worth the work and the waiting in the process. This deep dive was an answer to prayer as my own heart experienced healing, my relationships grew more intimate with God and others, and I felt more humbly equipped to walk alongside others in their heart work journey. Learning to settle into the slowness of the Lord’s daily healing work at the heart level provided me an inner peace and rest I did not know I was missing. Sometimes, we do not realize how sick we are until we know what it feels like to be healthy. True deep healing of the heart is transformative and worthwhile!
The work of the heart is helpful, hard, and healing; and the satisfaction and transformation that come as a result are actually what I desire so deeply. I believe the women who join us in this Bible study journey share similar desires. Yes, the Lord is calling us to love him and others with all of our heart. It feels like a tall order, but rest in his kind invitation, “Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light” (Matt. 11:28-30). Satisfying deep desires means diving into deep waters. He is with us. He is for us. He will guide us in his love and grace.
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