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Why I Quit "Following My Heart"

Recently, I was summoned for jury duty. In the midst of an ice storm, I was required to get to the court house to report in as a potential juror. Being on a jury for a trial is something I have always wanted to do. I loved the idea of being a part of the justice system. However, after being selected as an alternate (meaning I would replace one of the 12 on the jury if something prevented them from their duties), I quickly came to realize how very complicated it is to decide if someone else is guilty or innocent. The lawyers were asking us to "trust our gut" and "use sound judgement" etc. I prayed the night before the jury would render a verdict. I said, "Lord, please give me a dream that gives me wisdom and your perspective."

That evening, I had a dream of being stuck on a wooden roller coaster and I couldn't get off of it. I can honestly say I have never had a dream like this before. It was exhausting. When I woke up I just felt sick. What did this mean?

I returned to the courthouse and listened to the closing statements given by both sides. The lawyers asked us to follow our hearts because there wasn't enough evidence either way but a judgement needed to be made.   The way the law works, you must be convinced without the shadow of a doubt that the person is guilty of the crime being accused. If you're not completely convinced, they must be determined "not guilty".

This was multiple people's lives, someone who allegedly had a crime committed against them, and someone who had lost so much already because of being accused. At the end of the day I am asking myself, "WHY ON EARTH did I ever desire to be in the position of making this kind of a judgement!?" Justice matters. Jurys matter. Making life altering decisions from your gut? Yikes. Terrifying but seemed necessary in this case.

At the end of the day, I was not needed for determining fault. Instead, I got to sit on the jury of this case and learn a lot about the justice system that I had not yet experienced. However, I was so thankful when it was over that I didn't have to make the choice.

So what was up with the dream? The endless roller coaster leading no where, the constant up down up down making me sick!

When we follow our hearts, it's a lot like being stuck on a roller coaster. This verdict to be rendered was going to have to come from our "hearts"- something I have learned is unreliable and honestly flat out dangerous sometimes. When we follow our hearts, sometimes we feel on top of the world only to be flung quickly down steep hills of chaos. I am reminded of this verse:

Jeremiah 17:7-9 “But blessed is the one who trusts in the Lord, whose confidence is in him. They will be like a tree planted by the water that sends out its roots by the stream. It does not fear when heat comes; its leaves are always green. It has no worries in a year of drought  and never fails to bear fruit. The heart is deceitful above all things and beyond cure. Who can understand it? I the Lord search the heart and examine the mind, to reward each person according to their conduct, according to what their deeds deserve.”

Stability comes from trusting the Lord, not our hearts. Our hearts are deceitful- they even trick us. One day our desires tell us to eat all the brownies and the next they tell us that we should be a body builder! Our desires go up down and all over the place. Rather than being a slave to our impulses, if we take our needs and desires to the Lord He is faithful to show us what will really bring life. May we be like a tree planted by water, the water representing the Presence of God, the Bible, regular christian fellowship, prayer, praise & worship. Being planted in this will bring stability to our minds, wills, and emotions even in the midst of the chaos of life.

Praying for you to know the unconditional love of the Lord today, Mommas. That the God of all peace and comfort fill you to overflowing- just like the banks of a river. May your heart be refreshed in His love for you.

Were you taught to follow your heart? What have the results of that been?

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