the growing heart

I know all the things you do. I have seen your love, your faith, your service, and your patient endurance. And I can see your constant improvement in all these things. [Revelation 2:19 NLT]

Spiritual growth is recurrent theme in religious circles these days. Often accompanied by sermons on knowing the bible and developing spiritual disciples. There are even folks who specialize in spiritual formation. Yet the focus is so often on matters of the head and not the heart.

I love the way 'constant improvement' is related to love, faith, service, and patient endurance. These are all fruit of the spirit. Or put another way, evidences of a growing heart. In reality the newly born heart is like a newborn baby. It is not meant to stay the same but to grow into maturity.

Like the babe the new heart needs food to grow and exercise to become strong. I imagine spiritual food to be the receiving of love and spiritual exercise to be the giving of love. Each aspect is very necessary for the heart to grow. In that sense there is nothing more important than love.

Help us Lord to be open to the giving and receiving of love.

... this devotion is part of a series from the book of Revelation

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