What good is a new heart if you can't live?

I was recently in Montana. It's a beautiful state. Full of amazing terrain and solitude. And while I enjoy solitude in small doses I am, at my core, a social being. So I find myself talking to folks. Not intrusively, just conversationally in passing. It was a brief moment in a grocery store that led e to a profound revelation.

In MT the good craft beers are in the grocery stores. I was on a quest for the best of the best. I found out that they were in the grocery stores by wandering into a liquor store and being told "We don't sell beer here. You gotta go to a grocery store." 

So I asked "Which one has the best beer selection?"

I was directed to a small grocery 2 blocks down in Whitefish, Montana. 

I grabbed two bombers of the delicious loot and proceeded to the checkout line.  I overheard the cashier talking to the guy in front of me about how he had a new heart and how much it costs. 

New heart is extremely expensive... noted!

Then he began ringing me up and I asked If he had a heart transplant, nope quadruple bypass and it cost something like $125k

So first thing I said is that in comparison to death $125k was a small price to pay. With a big smile he agreed. And then he went on. 

He explained to me how the doctors had gotten on to him about doing too much with in the first few months. He loved to fish and they didn't want him to do that or several of the other things that he loved doing. 

The words that came out of me have been ringing since. 

"What good is a new heart if you can't live?"

He laughed and agreed. We both said bye and I walked out to the car still thinking about those words and they haven't left me. 

What good is a new heart if you can't live? 

In our faith we are promised a new start. A new lease on life. A renewal, a transformation. A re-birth. But what do we do with it? 

My experience is that we go on with the same worries. The same routines. The same lack of life that we had before. 

And when I'm reminded of the promise of "life abundantly." or "life to the fullest" I chalk it up to theological terminology. The truth is, the burden of theological terminology wasn't there when Jesus said these things. 

Everyday we wake up, every moment we remember these things, every time we reflect on salvation is a new chance to start again. To repent. To change direction. 

What good is a new heart if you can't live? 

Has your faith led to more life? Are you living abundantly? Do you feel more alive? 

Or, like most of us, are you burdened, distracted, desiring more. 

Our culture is beautiful and terrible. We are so connected, but that connection also distracts us. We are tied to our phones. We are fueled by likes on a photo or comments on a post. Literally fueled by these things. They are designed to trickle in and create a chemical response in our brains to keep us tied to them longer. We are addicted to being connected, but the connection is a false connection based on self gratification and validation. The true connection that we need to LIVE is selfless and based on true interaction not interaction defined by an algorithm that is designed to make the most of advertising dollars. 

To live is beautiful. To simply exist is sad. We all exist, but how many of us truly live? 

So, I ask you again:

What good is a new heart if you can't live? 

You've been given the promise of a new life. You've been promised rebirth. Life abundant... to the fullest. 

Thank the people that model this for you. Thank them in person, don't tag them in some stupid reblog. 

I'm tired of existing. I miss living. I miss feeling 100% fully alive and I don't think I'm alone. 



Hold on, let me take a picture.

Blessed are those that get burned

Blessed are those that get burned