Heart Check Returns

It was 2003 when I traveled to Zambia, Africa, for the first time. Traveling to a developing country with the sights, sounds, and smells was new and exhilarating. This trip was so raw. I experienced the impact of HIV/AIDS, extreme poverty, and complete hopelessness. The things we take for granted like education, job opportunities, and food security were scarce or non-existent. I witnessed the painful realities of life that so many in our world experience daily.

As I looked deeper and tried my best to understand what was happening, I saw something that I didn’t anticipate. With closer observation, I saw the life-giving difference that a relationship with Jesus can make. Not just a “get into heaven” difference, but a life-changing, decision-altering, hope-giving difference. I learned how to trust God for “our daily bread” because in their world there was no other way to get food. I saw God provide over and over again. My heart was changed.

This week we begin Heart Check: Press On. I want to challenge you to fully engage with this series and see if you can find what I found in Zambia - a changed heart.

Paul Gartley
Spiritual Formation Pastor