A long time ago, my mother purchased a portrait of Jesus walking on water. That image has always captivated me. His serene countenance contrasts dramatically with the tempest around Him. It’s an image of the God-man making the supernatural look natural. It’s a portrait of a life that was marked by love, signs, and wonders, a life that brought heaven to earth.
In the Old Testament, after King Nebuchadnezzar came to his senses, he gave praise to God, saying, “I thought it good to declare the signs and wonders that the Most High God has worked for me.  How great are His signs, And how mighty His wonders! His kingdom is an everlasting kingdom, And His dominion is from generation to generation” (Dan. 4:2-3, New King James Version). King Nebuchadnezzar personally experienced God’s signs and wonders.
By contrast, in the New Testament, when a group of scribes and Pharisees (the religious leaders of the day) asked Jesus to perform a sign, His answer was an emphatic NO! Why would Jesus answer them this way? Why would He deny anyone a manifestation of His power? Yet we find here that He not only refused to grant their petition, but He also rebuked them, saying, “A wicked and adulterous generation asks for a sign! But none will be given it except the sign of the prophet Jonah” (Matt. 12:39, New International Version).
They asked for a sign but were instead given a wake-up call, alerting them to the wickedness of their own hearts. It’s not our backgrounds or circumstances that bring us close to God; it’s the condition of our hearts. Jesus accused them of being wicked and unfaithful because, in reality, they were not seeking Him with all of their hearts. A wicked heart stands in the way of God’s mighty wonders.
You and I can think that this doesn’t apply to us. We’re the righteousness of God in Christ, right? However, Andrew’s How to Prepare Your Heart teaching puts things in a different perspective. Andrew says, “A person [who] doesn’t have God in all of their thoughts is a very proud person, a very self-centered person.” It’s the kind of person who is too busy for God. Andrew references the NIV, which says, “ In his pride the wicked man does not seek him; in all his thoughts there is no room for God” (Ps. 10:4). It implies that this person is too busy with everything else, to the point that there is no room in their life for God. This describes a self-centered person. Andrew goes on to say, “You can’t have two people on the throne of your life. You cannot be sitting on the throne of your life and have God on the throne of your life at the same time.”
Maybe we can’t relate to the word wicked, but in our modern societies, we all can relate to the idea of self-centeredness. Being absorbed with our own agendas can numb us to the point of being unfaithful to God because we’re not giving Him first place in our lives. The result is, we can’t see Him because our hearts are blind. We could be asking Jesus for a sign while not giving our hearts to Him, and then wonder why we don’t receive.
If you have allowed something to take the place of God in your life, you can change that right now. Andrew says the key is humility, and this teaching will show you how to make room in your heart and give God the place that belongs only to Him. Take time to prepare your heart. Preparation time is never wasted time!
For more on this teaching, watch the Gospel Truth television program. How to Prepare Your Heart is airing right now. Or you can order the teaching from our online store or through the Helpline: 719-635-1111.
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