What do you like collecting and why do you collect them?
Your collectables are measured by the purpose for them
The heart of man likes to collect things. Why? So he can be better/ look better than his neighbour. It’s really just a competition over who’s the Queen and who are the slaves and servants. It’s not the collecting that’s the problem; it’s the purpose of the collection.
The Lord tells us in Jeremiah17:9 that the heart of man is deceitful above everything and desperately wicked … no one can know how much.
Like collectable cards, or stamps or coins, man likes to collect … friends, husbands, knowledge, skills, love, good feelings, God, good works. The real truth is, that a non-genuine Christian is really promoting their husband/wife/God as an accessory … a bag or wristwatch or bracelet to parade to their friends and enemies, so that they are better than them; all without nothing being said.
Man doesn’t like to collect bad feelings, so he swaps this card for a better feeling. How does he do that? Simply by deducing that you’re not nice, so you’re not a friend, so I’m better than you, so I don’t have to listen to your hurt. He talks himself into not feeling the hurt, but it’s just a pretence.
The simple reality is that to most of us, our feelings are our truth, even to the point that when God presents the truth about us to ourselves we reject the truth because it doesn’t equate with our feelings. Plus, our friends are the measurement of our value … high-ranked friends means I am higher than you, so you can’t tell me what to do, and you can’t tell me I’m wrong, and you can’t make me feel inferior.
The bottom line
In their envy hurt, this heart deduces … I think I’m special, so if somebody has a problem with me then they’re the problem, and if I have a problem with somebody, then they’re also the problem.
This is the heart of selfishness because your neighbour has no right of opinion. This is not loving your neighbour, it’s loving you above your neighbour. Therefore, all the commandments are effectively fractured and you’re the true sinner even if you’ve been sinned against.
This selfish heart deduces … How could you do this to ME, I’m the Queen/King? How could you think that of ME; I’m the Queen? How could you reject ME, I’m the Queen? Everyone really believes they are something. Everyone likes to boss and everyone hates being bossed. That’s because I AM the Queen/ I am fantastic … I’m the boss, not you, and if you hurt ME then that proves that you are the one that’s wrong and I am right.
The real human heart boils down to the selfishness of not being the chosen one, plus the selfishness of being rejected, coupled with the desire to get back at the one who has hurt me, and the stubborn will to never be hurt by anyone.
This is the true heart of the human spirit but we all camouflage it with good works and niceness. Why? So no one can tell us we are no good, and so I won’t get into trouble, and no one can correct us and make us feel bad, and so I can collect friends to put myself up above my enemy.
This is the thinking of Satan because your neighbour can never be right; God can never address you; and the pastor can never correct you because you’re always right and never wrong. This is the heart of love ME first, not God first nor my neighbour. This is the heart of Satan, not Holy Spirit (Ezekiel 28:6,17).
You’ll never find God whilst YOU sit on your throne and hold onto your rejection pains and, in your pride, refuse to forgive someone for hurting your feelings. You’ll never find repentance because you’re too proud to forgive someone who’s hurt your feelings; you’ll only ever live in blame and be blind to your own pride.
The testimony of Paul …. Galatians 2:20
Paul’s testimony was … I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ lives in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me. If that’s not your testimony then you’re into yourself and your goodness is fake and your Christianity is counterfeit.
The Lord searches the heart by testing the kidneys (reins) Jeremiah 17:10
What does that mean? It means that the kidneys are the filtration system of the blood and if you want your heart to be healthy, you have to excrete from your spirit anything that you selfishly want to hold onto in your mind, will and emotions that will put you above your neighbour. If you won’t let go the bitterness, envy and pride that circulates through your emotions then it will eventually kill your spirit.
The pride of rejection pain
Recently I was ministering to a young 12 year old girl in our fellowship. On the surface, this girl has been perfect in her attitude and helpfulness, but something was troubling her. On digging deeper it became clear that she was upset with her friend because they were angry. I spoke with the friend and asked what was going on and learnt that the girl was TELLING this person that they weren’t a friend because they were angry, but the reason they were angry was that they were being TOLD that they had to be her friend. The girl felt hurt and wouldn’t forgive her friend for the hurt. Underneath it all was a competition between who could collect the most friends because they both believed that they were the most important person in the whole fellowship, even above their parents. I was dumbfounded and I began to awaken to the reality that most people really do believe that they are the most important person on the planet. Jeremiah was right.
Contrary to what the world says, the Word of God says that the heart of man is born evil. He needs a transplant; he needs the heart of God. His selfish heart has to be diagnosed and then cut out and replaced with a new heart. This is what God calls being born again. The reality is that no one wants to see their own heart; their feelings always blame someone else. If that’s your case, then you’ll never find my God! You’ll never get a new heart.
In Luke 14:26, God says that unless you’re really serious about giving up the selfish benefits you want from your parents, children, spouse, siblings and friends (the things that promote you as your own god) then you cannot be My disciple. Unless you abdicate your throne you’ll never find God no matter how much of Him you collect.
I’m better than you
Whenever you say in your heart, I’m better than you or you’re better than me, then you are into position and envy. God’s not into that; only Satan is, Ezekiel 28:6,17. Whether you feel like it or not, the word better implicates and exposes your heart with the self-love of positional envy … envy that you’re higher than me, have more friends than me, and can do things better than me; and arrogance that you are inferior to me and I’m superior to you.
Q. what’s it mean to love your neighbour as yourself?
The church and the world teach that you can’t love properly until you love yourself first. The Word of God teaches that you can’t love properly until you love God first, and that simply means that you die to every want that puts you above your neighbour. If this is your genuine self-less desire, then God will give you a new heart.
Too proud to forgive someone who has hurt my feelings
In the 1st World War, Ernest Hemmingway volunteered as an ambulance driver. He was wounded whilst attempting to save the life of an Italian soldier. Whilst in hospital he fell in love with his nurse who had saved his leg from amputation due to gangrene, and from there he lived in the expectation that they would marry. He returned to America and she to the war. Whilst she was nursing, a doctor asked her to marry him and eventually she consented. Hemmingway was devastated. However, her love for Hemmingway prevailed and she didn’t proceed with the marriage and returned to America to tell Hemmingway that she really loved him. Sadly, Hemmingway shunned her because his pride wouldn’t let him forgive the woman who had shunned him for someone else. His unchristian heart’s philosophy was … if you hurt me then I’ll hurt you back.
Hemmingway was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1954, married 4 times and eventually suicided in 1961. Despite his bravery and awards, the real issue in his heart was that he was too proud to forgive someone who had hurt his feelings, and he died a sad figure of a man, the fruit of unforgiven rejection vengeance.
Most people are just like Hemmingway.They ignorantly live in the pride of their hurt feelings and never truly forgive those who have hurt them. They say they do, but their pride never really lets it go.
Here are some diagnostic questions to search out your true heart condition …
- Do you think you’re better than your neighbour?
- Do you think your neighbour is better than you?
- Do you wish you had what your neighbour has?
- Are you happy when your neighbour falls?
- Do you think you’re better than your neighbour when your neighbour gets corrected?
- Do you think you are of significant importance for God?
- Do you love to boss?
- Do you hate being bossed?
- Do you dislike your neighbour when he’s not nice to you?
- Do you think you’re pretty?
- Do you think you’re handsome?
- Do you think you’re ugly?
- Do you think you’re brainy or clever?
- Do you think you’re skilful?
- Do you think you are good?
- Do you think you are bad?
- What do you do when you get corrected?
- What’s your mood when you can’t have what you want?
Answer yes to any of these and you had better give up your selfish heart (it’s lifted up with its own importance) and let God put His heart in you. It’s not hard, so if you can’t do it, it just means that you are too important to yourself.
May God challenge the heart of each remnant to be replaced with God’s heart, through repentance of our selfish pride.
Pastor John Isaac