My heart seems to misfire.
Written by Zachary McCann
When I was younger my brothers and I would have BB gun wars in our back yard, civil war style. We would get about thirty yards apart take aim and fire at each other. How we found this event to be fun escapes my memory to this day. Every time we played adrenaline was at an all time high especially if you had just gotten hit with what felt like a thousand wasp stings. There was only one problem every time we played this game. We had a bad habit of leaving our guns outside, and because the guns we regularly exposed to the elements they became weathered and would misfire often. This was extremely disheartening especially when you were trying to return fire and could not, due to your weathered gun.
Have you ever tried to heal the deep insecure wounds in your heart on your own? You know that part of you that misfires, that part of you that keeps leading you back to the same crap over and over. No matter how hard you pray or beg Jesus for freedom your weathered heart keeps misfiring. If I’m being honest, I’ve been a Christ follower my entire life and there are still times that I fight and wrestle the monster known as sin, and I don’t emerge victorious.
My heart seems to misfire, especially when I should be returning fire. Sometimes I blame the misfire on not seeking God enough or I justify the sin by making excuses. But thank God for the Gospel! Thank God Christ's forgiveness and grace is not contingent on my ability to perform. David committed adultery and was still called a man after God’s own heart. Thank God the bible is filled with sinful men and women that have been redeemed and were still greatly used by God. Time and time again I have found much comfort in Paul's words in Romans 7.
"So the trouble is not with the law, for it is spiritual and good. The trouble is with me, for I am all too human, a slave to sin. I don’t really understand myself, for I want to do what is right, but I don’t do it. Instead, I do what I hate. But if I know that what I am doing is wrong, this shows that I agree that the law is good. So I am not the one doing wrong; it is sin living in me that does it."
Many times I resonate with Paul when he say’s, “I don’t really understand myself.” You see the problem is we are all human and that will never change. The greater truth is that we will never understand our hearts no matter how hard we try. All of us were born with a sinful nature which is why we are drawn towards sinful lusts. We must understand that sin is the disease and the parts of us that misfire are only the symptoms of a sinful nature. Stop trying to correct the misfires of your heart and start fighting the underlying issue, sin! John Owen famously said, “Be killing sin or it will be killing you!"
Paul continues in Romans 7 by saying, "And I know that nothing good lives in me, that is, in my sinful nature. I want to do what is right, but I can’t. I want to do what is good, but I don’t. I don’t want to do what is wrong, but I do it anyway. But if I do what I don’t want to do, I am not really the one doing wrong; it is sin living in me that does it.
This may sound repetitive but I can assure that sin is the problem. Many of us are working so hard to try and fight off the symptoms of sin and this is where we get it all wrong. We must remember that the symptoms only point to the disease which is sin. Stop trying to kill lust and start killing sin. The question still remains. How do I kill sin when my heart keeps misfiring? The only way this is possible is by owning your sin and confessing it to others. The only way to defeat sin is to embarrass it by dragging it into the light. Ecclesiastes 4 says, "Two people are better off than one, for they can help each other succeed. If one person falls, the other can reach out and help. But someone who falls alone is in real trouble. Likewise, two people lying close together can keep each other warm. But how can one be warm alone? A person standing alone can be attacked and defeated, but two can stand back-to-back and conquer. Three are even better, for a triple-braided cord is not easily broken."
The truth is the only way to make progress in overcoming sin is though submitting to the Lordship of Jesus Christ and allowing your heart to be fully known by other believers. The greatest part about being fully known by others is that when your heart misfires and you give into temptation you have others to help you fight your battles. If you find your heart misfiring often it’s likely that you're doing life alone!