Friday, April 15, 2011

The Heart's Mainspring

(While I'm working on a couple of new blog posts, I thought I'd re-share this one that I wrote in May 2009.  My heart needs "serviced" now and then to keep it in proper working order.  Re-reading this has given me the "tune-up" that I needed.  I hope it also blesses you!...Karen)

“Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts.
See if there is any offensive way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.”
Psalm 139:23, 24
I have an old clock that sits on a table by my bed.  Each night I wind it and it appears to tick away with a steady rhythm, marking each second, minute and hour as they pass.   I like the old clock and I want to rely on its internal workings to faithfully provide me with the correct time of day.  But when my attention is turned from it, the clock stutters and misses a beat. And with each missed beat in its rhythm, it slows down and goes its own way, losing time.   Its alarm goes off at will and refuses to follow the commands it has been given.  Often it stops completely until I give it a little shake, fiddle with the settings on its back, and set it aright on the table.

Within the workings of this old clock is a mainspring that needs repair or replacement in order to change its behavior and put it back into its correct working order.  My feeble attempts to repair it are in vain, for I am not equipped with the knowledge and skill it takes to fix what ails it.   I am able to take it apart; the tools necessary for that job are elementary. I  could carefully remove each part, laying them gently aside, cautious not to lose any of the clock’s necessary pieces.   But my ability to mend it and put it back together into a re-made, whole, well-running and obedient clock is non-existent.  The result, I am sure, would render far more erratic behavior then what it originally displayed, or at the very worse, a completely unusable and unserviceable clock.

The attention my clock needs requires a master craftsman’s touch, one trained in the methods and mechanics, with the proper tools at his disposal and the knowledge to mend the clock’s inconsistent behavior. Because there is something broken or worn out within its workings, my clock needs to be in capable hands that love the work they are trained to perform.  It requires the skill and wisdom that far surpasses my own limited understanding to return its condition back to what it was meant to be.  And because I know my own limitations, I would readily hand it over to the craftsman to repair it before attempting to do it on my own and possibly make matters worse.  I cannot save the clock.  It needs a master’s touch.

Why is it, then, when it comes to our own heart’s mainsprings, we rush in our attempts to self-repair them instead of giving them over to the Master Craftsman, Jesus Christ, to lovingly put back into order?  Our hearts are much like the heart of the clock I own.  They are inconsistent in their behavior.  They skip over seconds of our lives that could bring us closer to saving grace and redemption.  Their alarm goes off when He draws close to them, giving us a false sense of warning and dread that there may be work we need to first perform, some deed or ceremony that is required.  We try to clean the workings of our hearts, attacking them with a feverishness that belies our ability to thoroughly cleanse them of our sinfulness and unworthiness.  We pull them apart, scattering their pieces into a jumbled mess, unsure which part fits where, losing pieces, or ending up with the proverbial extra screw lying solitary and forgotten.  Our pride causes us to refuse the proffered hand of guidance and help. We arrogantly think we can fix without assistance what lies broken and damaged within our hearts, only to make matters worse and ending up with a heart unfit for service to ourselves, let alone our Savior.

Our hearts require the gentle and loving touch of the Master that created them.  It is His practiced eye alone that can search out their internal workings, looking for any “offensive” parts that need removed and repaired or replaced.   Jesus Christ changes and mends the inner heart of man much like the watch repairer lovingly repairs the mainsprings of a clock, in order that the rhythm of the heart will match His own, testing the cadence and gently restoring its “anxious thoughts."  And when it is left to Jesus to make the heart new again, it remains faithful to Him for it knows the perfection and wisdom of its Master’s touch.

So, I will gladly and gratefully hand over my heart to the Master Craftsman, Jesus Christ. Only He is able to repair its mainspring, for He is the One Who created it and intimately knows the order of each part.  I can rest in the knowledge that He will renew it in His own image, and that for all eternity it will be in union with His own heart, marking perfect time until everlasting peace and joy are once again restored.

1 comment:

Cory R. said...

Thank you, Karen for posting this gentle and comforting piece. It was just what my heart needed to hear. I wish that I had a more eloquent and witty way to tell you how your gift of writing encourages me. Just know that I am deeply thankful for your posts, and thankful for the refreshment that visiting these brings.