HEART CULTURE: OUR INTERNAL REALITY
A core dimension of big world changing dreams is the call to serve society, and to be the flavour of heaven in culture. (Matthew 5:13-16). But in order to transform culture we first must see transformation of our heart culture. Transformation and Reformation happens inside out. Heart culture is much more than a good idea but a way of life, culture is the ‘operating system’ of the human heart. It’s a way of thinking, and behaving. Culture is what sets our core values, priorities and boundaries, culture is what our ideas and beliefs look like when they are lived out.
The invisible foundation of culture is BELIEFS. Merely repeating ideas won’t transform us. We don’t really believe a truth until our behaviour, emotions, and words line up. We often only focus on doing something better, trying to modify our behaviour through gritted teeth, self-effort and white knuckles. Rather than trying harder we need to look at what we actually believe. Let’s ask ourselves “if I really believed this truth what would my life look like?”. It is NOT a life of trying harder to get our act together, the starting point for transformation is not new circumstances but a new set of beliefs.
It is possible to have great doctrine, and remain a mess. Our greatest need is to become believing, believers who actually believe. To move from mere mental assent to actually believing God we need to turn our spiritual guns from rebuking circumstances and aim instead at our own unbelief. We need to understand that hopelessness is rooted and perpetuated by believing lies. Lies about God, ourselves, others and our circumstances. To see big impossible God dreams fulfilled a core priority is to go after personal and corporate hopelessness. Once this happens its impossible for things to remain the same.
In “The Three Battlegrounds”, Francis Frangipane says :-
“If you want to identify the hidden strongholds in your life, you need only survey the attitudes in your heart. Every area in your thinking that glistens with hope in God is an area which is being liberated by Christ. But any system of thinking that does not have hope, which feels hopeless, is a stronghold which must be pulled down.”
Personal and cultural transformation is given momentum through us becoming personally fully persuaded about our identity in Christ. To see heart culture established we need to understand that culture shift must be rooted in IDENTITY not PERFORMANCE. Choosing to agree with God and the name He calls us by, believing His assessment is vital to us GROWING UP to be like our Father.
“That in seeing us and hearing us they meet the Father. That’s the great assignment. That’s the only real calling”. (Paul Manuring, LDP 1, Family 2016).
Inscription found on a tombstone of an 11th Century Anglican Bishop in Westminster Abbey
When I was young and free and my imagination had no limits, I dreamed of changing the World, as I grew older and wiser and realised the world not change, I shortened my sights and somewhat decided to change only my country, but it too seemed immoveable. As I grew into my twilight years, I settled on changing only my family and those closest to me, but alas they would have none of it. Now as I lay on my death bed, and I suddenly realise that if I’d only changed myself first, then by example perhaps could have changed my family, and from their inspiration and encouragement to me I would of been better able to help my country, and from there I may even have been able to change the world. (Source, Bethel TV, Jason Vallotton, Sunday am October 16, 2016).
This bishop realised that in his younger years, he worked and did many things to bring about his, but only to find out that what he was trying to give away in the beginning, should have started with him. Transformation and Reformation happens inside out. Dreams about healthy marriages, families and communities really starts with our heart culture, being loved by God, loving ourselves and then exporting what we have come to know and enjoy.