“So circumcise the foreskin of your [minds and] hearts; be no longer stubborn and hardened.” (Deut 10:16 Amplified)
And the Lord your God will circumcise your hearts and the hearts of your descendants, to love the Lord your God with all your [mind and] heart and with all your being, that you may live.” (Deut. 30:6 Amplified)
Circumcise yourselves to the Lord and take away the foreskins of your hearts, you men of Judah and inhabitants of Jerusalem, lest My wrath go forth like fire [consuming all that gets in its way] and burn so that no one can quench it because of the evil of your doings.(Jeremiah 4:4 Amplified)
Circumcision. For me, it is a word for the most part I am uncomfortable with. Good Ole’ Webster defines it as, “Surgical remove of the foreskin of male.” Just reading through the definition makes me say “Ouch!” Even though in our modern world, when a baby boy is born this procedure is done without a second thought. I still get a bit squeamish when this word is spoken.
So, when God showed me the need for a circumcision of my heart, I became a little queasy. Through the scriptures on circumcision, He revealed my true spiritual condition, and it wasn’t pretty. Even though I was beginning to recognize the actual state of my heart, I became “stubborn and hardhearted” against what God was asking me to do. He was asking me to look at the sins and ugliness in my own heart and get rid of them! As Keith Green sang, God was creating in me a “clean heart and renewing the right spirit within me.”
In renewing the right spirit in me, God performed spiritual surgery on my heart. According to Webster, “cutting around” is the bibles definition of circumcision. The circumcision of my heart was cutting around and cutting out, those things which were impure in my life. Those hidden attitudes and thoughts known only to me and God. They included unforgiveness, romanticizing, hidden pride, rebellion and hypocrisy.
This spiritual surgery was a process which took a few months. Unlike so much in our world today, God didn’t come in and clean out my heart in one hour, day or even week. It took months of soul searching, scripture and prayer for God to expose and then “cut out” those things in my life which stood in the way of my relationship with Him, my husband, children, family and friends.
One of the things which happened during this process, the Holy Spirit showed me unforgiveness in my heart towards a woman who had been involved with my husband. An affair which had taken place 10 years prior. I had long since forgiven my husband, but never dealt with the feelings I had towards her. Honestly, I didn’t even realize there were feelings I needed to deal with. God made it very clear through the still small voice of the Holy Spirit, and the reading of His Word, it was time for me to forgive. I knew in my spirit, I couldn’t go any further spiritually or emotionally until it was dealt with.
Through prayer, the Word and the shoulder of a dear friend, forgiveness came. Then God prompted me to find this woman’s address and write a letter to her. To this day, I have never spoken to her. I didn’t know her then and don’t know her now. But I knew God wanted me to write a letter of forgiveness. And I did. This side of eternity, I might never know what effect it had on her. I do know how it affected me. The chains of unforgiveness were broken, I was free!
You see, through circumcision of the heart…we find freedom with a clean heart and renewed spirit! Freedom to “love the Lord with all our mind, heart and being.” Not to mention the freedom it brings to love our family, friends, neighbors and even those who need our forgiveness!
Are you able to love the Lord with all your mind, heart and being? Or is today the day for the “Circumcision of your heart” to begin?