I recently ran across the “head, heart, hands” paradigm of being a follower of Christ. The guys at The Austin Stone like to ask questions like,
- “How are you growing in your knowledge of God?” (Head)
- “How are your affections for Jesus being expressed?” (Heart)
- “How have you obeyed God this week?” (Hands)
I’ve found these questions to work well not only in encouraging one another in small groups or one-on-one settings, but also when posed to myself in quiet moments before God. Am I only serving Christ in one or two of these three ways? Which ways are easiest for me, and which will require extra attention and effort?
These three questions can also be great measure of whether I’m worshiping God in a whole-life way: in Spirit and in Truth. It’s hard to overemphasize the danger of “cold, hard facts” that haven’t yet moved us to a greater love for Christ that is lived out in obedience. Or the many pitfalls of a life based only on quickly-changing feelings, without first giving them a firm foundation by rightly submitting to Truth in the way that we think and act.
There is a beautiful depth to our worship when it is an expression of all three things: right thoughts, right emotions, and right actions. When we can recognize God’s work in these areas– not only in our own lives, but in the lives of those around us in our church– we can find wonderful encouragement in Christ. And when, as broken people, we find ourselves falling short of these callings, we can hide ourselves again in the Gospel of grace. Reminding our heads that we have been given a righteousness not our own, calling our hearts to love because we have been well-loved, and urging our hands to respond in gratefulness to a God who has done great things for us.
For more information about Grace Bible Church, visit begrace.org.