I will never forget that phone call. It was March, my senior year of high school. I was “supposed” to be in English class, but of course was spending my time ever-so-wisely in the library. The secretary tracked down my location and transferred the call to the library. It was announced: “Sharita… You have a phone call.”
The chorus of “Oooooooo, I wonder if she’s in trouble?” echoed in the room from my schoolmates as I rolled my eyes and made my way over to the phone.
“Sharita.” My mom’s voice sounded… weird. “Um, your Daddy is sick.”
“What kind of sick?” I wondered why Dad having a stomach ache would warrant a phone called to school.
“I think he’s having a heart attack.”
BOOM. There it was. He was 45 years old. I was a senior. My sister a junior. And little brother just started kindergarten that year. How could my Dad be having a heart attack? Just 45 days before, he had been to the cardiologist for insurance check-up stuff… and they gave him a clean bill of health.
I didn’t really understand the severity of his heart attack until they decided to LifeFlight him to the Kansas Heart Hospital in Wichita. The events over the next several hours could easily fill up a week’s worth of blog posts. I will never forget the details.
Turns out, an artery in his heart was 98% blocked. By the time Mom, my two siblings and I got rounded up and arrived in Wichita, he was already out of surgery from receiving a stint and resting in the ICU.
Scariest few hours of our lives. All I could think about was the fact that we might lose him that day. Not fair. Where did that blockage come from? They said he was HEALTHY less than two months ago. He was supposed to see me graduate high school and college, walk me down the aisle at my wedding and give me away, hold his grandbaby in his arms.
All of that was threatened to be taken from us from a tiny blockage in his heart.
I am happy to report that over 8 years have passed and Dad is still kicking. (Thank you, Jesus!) As I reflected on this event, I couldn’t help but think how our OWN heart blockages can threaten to take our lives…
I am not talking about the heart blockages from plaque and build up. I am talking about the “heart junk” that keeps us from being in an intimate relationship with Christ. If our heart is blocked, it becomes hard… we start to die from the inside out. We grow farther and farther from Christ.
All the while, we could convince ourselves that we have a “clean bill of health” from the outside. We are “doing” all the right things– going to church, half-heartedly praying, giving to the poor– but inside, we are slowly dying. Our heart for Christ is blocked. Clogged. Slowing down. Ceasing to beat.
Our blockages can come in many forms. Unconfessed sin. Unforgiveness. Desire to control our lives. Inability to trust God. Worry. Anxiety. Depression. Unhealed hurt from others.
Fortunately for us, God is the most talented cardiologist that ever existed. He doesn’t require medication, LifeFlight helicopters, or surgery. We must simply RECEIVE His grace and mercy into our hearts. If we share with Him openly our hurts, sins and grudges, He is the one who can heal them. Clean them out. Immediately.
Ask God if you are living your “clean bill of health” from the inside out or if you have some blocked areas of your heart. Ask Him to reveal any “blocked areas” to you and then help you to clean them out… He is The One who can make your heart beat, healthily, wildly and passionately. For Him.
Today, let’s allow Jesus to unblock our hearts so we can Live for Him.
Lovin’ His Lub-Dubbing,
“…Let us draw near to God with a sincere heart in full assurance of faith, having ourhearts sprinkled to cleanse us from a guilty conscience and having our bodies washed with pure water.” –Hebrews 10:22
How is your heart beating today? Is it healthy? Has God helped to unblock your heart? In what ways? I would love to hear about it. Comment here.