Your cheatin’ heart will tell on you (don’t follow your heart)

heart Jeremiah 17


cheatin heart hank williams

We humans continually hustle to hide the hurt and hideousness of our cheatin’ heart behind religion, self-righteousness (self-justification), and/or rebellion. We deny the scathing seriousness of our sin and the evil nature of our heart, even though the Bible declares that: “All of us have become like one who is unclean, and all our righteous acts are like filthy rags.”

God’s grace calls us to repent — to replace our religion, self-righteousness, and rebellion with His gift of radical recovery, restoration, and reconciliation. You don’t repent by “following your heart.” (Your heart is even more confused, corrupt, and cheatin’ than your head. It will continually frustrate you and run you through the gates of hell on earth!)  You repent by opening yourself up to the inner conviction of the Holy Spirit and allowing God to break your heart (by showing you the scathing seriousness of your sin) to the point that the only thing you want is God’s mercy and forgiveness.

We need to open ourselves up to the gracious conviction of the Holy Spirit and allow God to reveal the real condition of our heart. Are you courageous enough to do that?

“The human heart is greedy. It will use religion, color, or any other excuse to justify its greed. Blame the human heart.” –Bono (Are you ready to blame your own heart?)

“It’s easier to say ‘My tooth is aching’ than ‘My heart is broken.” –C.S. Lewis (Are you ready to admit that your heart is morally broken?)

“The truths that I know best I have learned on my knees. I never know a thing well until it is burned in my heart by prayer.” –John Bunyan (Are you willing to get on your knees and seek God’s forgiveness with all your might?)

“Your cheatin’ heart
Will make you weep
You’ll cry and cry
And try to sleep.
But sleep won’t come
The whole night through
Your cheatin’ heart
Will tell on you.”
–Hank Williams (also sung by Patsy Cline)

About Steve Simms

I like to look and think outside the box. In college I encountered Jesus Christ and I have been passionate about trying to get to know Him better ever since. My wife and I co-lead a non-traditional expression of the body of Christ in Nashville based on open participation and Spirit-led sharing. We long to see the power and passion of the first Christ-followers come to life in our time. I have written a book about our experiences called, "Beyond Church: An Invitation To Experience The Lost Word Of The Bible--Ekklesia" that is available in Kindle & paperback @
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5 Responses to Your cheatin’ heart will tell on you (don’t follow your heart)

  1. Neil Girrard says:

    Hi Steve, You wrote:You don’t repent by “following your heart.”
    This isn’t exactly a whole truth. We must repent from our heart. We are commanded to love God with all of our heart (and everything else too!) We can follow our heart when we truly love God because He is our heart’s desire. Yes, there is sin within our heart and when we recognize it we must purge it. But if we can’t follow our heart toward our Husband we only have yet another form of religion as surely as when we only know about God and don’t really know Him. Food for thought. Neil

  2. wjcollier3 says:

    Thanks for the post. I just stumbled on your site and have been reading some of your thoughts on what you are calling “Organic Church”. I like a lot of what I am reading! As to this post, I wrote something similar a few years ago. Keep up the good work!

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