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The Heart Cycle: An Intricate Dance of Mind, Will, and Emotion

Every action you take cycles through the chambers of your heart.

It all starts with desire.

I know our minds don't always work in perfect linear fashion, but all three sections of the heart come into play.

  • The desire

  • The knowledge

  • The intention

The Desire

When I began to look at this picture of the heart as the convergence of the mind, the will, and the emotions I asked myself: "What is the starting point that leads us to the actions that we take?" I believe it all begins with desire. James explains it this way in chapter 1 verses 14-15:

"But each one is tempted when he is drawn away by his own desires and enticed. The, when desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full- grown, brings forth death."

This is an example of the whole heart cycle dealing with sinful actions, but let's look at something sort of neutral, at least on the surface.

The example I like to use is the action of working out. The desire behind this activity is to be in good physical shape. You could (and should) go even deeper to ask "Why do I desire to be in good physical shape?" It could be to be healthy and prepared to do whatever the Lord requires of me physically. Who knows? A team from my church had to be physically fit to climb the mountain trails of Honduras. OR your answer might be to attract attention with my body. The answer tells you the status of your heart.

But for our example let's just say the desire is to get in shape. That desire sits in the desire circle of my heart diagram. Then what?

The Knowledge

Next I must get the knowledge in my mind about how to achieve that desire. To be in good physical shape I must work out, among other things. That knowledge sits in the mind circle. Then what?

The Intention

My will has to enter in and I must decide to work out. That's the will section of the heart. It is the will that drives us to take action or inaction.

A whole heart is one that is in agreement in all of these circles. A divided heart happens when you desire something but lack the knowledge or the will to make it happen. A lot of people want to be in shape, they have the will but not the knowledge or the wrong knowledge. Some want to be in shape and have the knowledge but not the will. Or you could say their desire for comfort outweighs their desire to be in shape. The stronger the desire, the more likely that the mind and will will be aligned.

The stronger desire will always win out.

That's what makes the difference between most of us and an Olympic athlete - the desire. The desire is what makes her willing to get up before dawn and practice until she is the best.

So that's what I call the first loop through the Heart Cycle. From desire to knowledge to will and then out into action. But it doesn't stop there. Next blog: the completed Heart Cycle.


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