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Opening Your Heart to God

    B"H  Cheshvan 5773

Opening your heart

Receiving the Divine Presence...

by John J. Parsons

Jer. 31:3b

"I have loved you with an everlasting love,
therefore I draw you in kindness" – Jeremiah. 31:3

THE HEBREW NAME FOR THE LORD is YHVH (יהוה), an utterly unique word that means "God is Present" (Exod. 3:14) and "God is Love" (Exod. 34:6-7). The Name is first mentioned when the LORD God breathed nishmat chayim, the "breath of life" into Adam (Gen. 2:7), and indeed, each of the four letters of the name are vowel sounds, which suggests that God's Spirit is as close as our very next breath. Yeshua likened the Ruach (רוּחַ), or Spirit, with the inscrutable motions of the wind: "The wind blows where it wishes, and you hear its sound, but you do not know where it comes from or where it goes. So it is with everyone who is born of the Spirit" (John 3:8). Just as the wind cannot be seen but encompasses us, so the Spirit of God surrounds and fills us (Acts 17:28). Therefore we see how Yeshua breathed on his followers and said, "Receive the Holy Spirit" (John 20:22).

Allow God to love you. There is nothing left for you to do other than to open your heart and receive. "It is finished," were Yeshua's last words from the cross, meaning, "It has been perfected – it is complete and present for you; there is nothing left to add." Never, ever, give up hope; never believe that you are beyond the reach of God's love. Even in your worst moments, and despite your character defects and your many sins, God's sees what is beautiful and worthy of redemption in you. Yeshua stands at the door and knocks, asking for you to open the door of your heart to receive his love (Rev. 3:20).

When we open our hearts to God's love and Presence, we are set free from the need to justify ourselves or to be admired by others; we can let go of our fear of rejection and our hopeless perfectionism because we no longer need the acceptance or approval of others to find our worth. God's love sets us free from the trap of comparing ourselves to others, and we are free to "accept that we are accepted" just for who we are.

It is a terrifying possibility that we can disallow what we need most of all, and that we can choose the self-imposed exile of a loveless and tragic existence. God forbid that we should miss God's heart for us! Above all, then, we must repent of our self-hatred, of self-abuse, and we must forever repudiate the lie that we are unable to be truly loved and accepted by God... We must begin first of all with God's unconditional love for us revealed at the cross of Messiah, and only then we can move forward spiritually.

May the Lord help us open our heart to His Presence this very hour.  Amen.

Hebrew-English Transliteration:

Hebrew-English transliteration

ve'ahavat olam ahavtikh, al ken meshakhtikh chasid

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