When He doesn’t have my heart

Be Thou my Vision, O Lord of my heart;
Naught be all else to me, save that Thou art.
Thou my best Thought, by day or by night,
Waking or sleeping, Thy presence my light.

A few days ago, I was at a worship night on campus where we sang this wonderful hymn among many other modern songs. Even though this song was kind of just thrown into the mix of other better-known praise songs, it struck a chord with me (no pun intended) more than any other one that night. And really, it was just the first sentence that hit the hardest:

Be Thou my Vision, O Lord of my heart.

And I realized quickly that God doesn’t have my heart right now. He just has my mind.

Intellectually, I totally get it. Jesus died in my place so that I could get to heaven and be justified before God. I believe this 100%, and I am committed to it through thick and thin. I mean, as a camp counselor last summer, I did teach this to kids every single day. I’ve never been so sure of anything–that we are redeemed forever through Jesus’ horrific death on the worst torture device ever conceived. I have made a 180 degree turn, from eternal death to eternal life. Definitely, God has my mind.

But right now, I ashamedly admit He doesn’t hold my heart.

Here’s the thing. I think maybe I’m starting to become so complacent in the Gospel that I’m forgetting to, you know, actually love God. I can say that God has my life and He is in control of it till I’m blue in the face. I can check all the boxes–I go to church, read the Bible sometimes, act like a decent person and pray. Guess I’m really wrestling with what it takes to satisfactorily follow God.

Is just “checking the boxes” enough? Is that all there is? How does love fit into this equation?

For these tough issues, sometimes it helps for me to picture the context of real life relationships. With a best friend, sometimes you just hang out without saying anything, and it’s a comfortable silence. Together, you guys do life without constantly thinking about the other person or if you’re impressing them or even if you love them. And most of us would say that’s a healthy friendship. I’m wondering, is it the same way with God?

Because God holds my mind, I absolutely know for an fact that Christ is my Lord. I am supposed to live how He lived and act in a way that glorifies God. I’m comfortable with that concept, and even passionate about it. But sometimes I have a problem with the whole emotion side. I don’t feel the love towards God all the time. In fact, that’s why this post is titled “When He doesn’t have my heart” because for me, it’s not an isolated occurrence–I’ve identified this in myself other times before. But is lack of love okay, or should we as Christians be constantly striving towards a relationship that relies more on this emotion?

Be Thou my Vision, O Lord of my heart.

Even though I know this is just a “stage” I’m going through and have been through before, this is my prayer—that God may indeed be our vision; not of our minds only, but of our hearts as well. Whatever that looks like in real life, I am dedicated to finding out.


P.S. I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments! Do you agree/disagree? What is your perspective on loving God and/or Him being Lord of your heart?


2 thoughts on “When He doesn’t have my heart

  1. Love is not primarily an emotion but action: “For this is the love of God, that we keep his commandments.” (1 John 5:3) However, when you feel like you are good at keeping the commandments and wonder why you’re not “feeling” it, maybe you might be struggling to have the right motives for serving God. The “Love Chapter” (1 Corinthians 13) is a check to see if your motivations are right. And if you find that they’re not, pray and tell God that you want to change and ask Him to purify your motives.

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