Wondering about Heart-Writing? I Have an Inkling…
by Rhonda Rhea
I’m just not really a tattoo kind of gal. Sorry. But if ever I did get one, I’d want a ballerina skirt. One around each upper arm. I would want them entirely for the satisfaction of going in and asking for “two tutu tattoos.”
That kind of wordplay has always cracked me up. What’s better than a weird tongue-tickler? I thought of that tattoo thing shortly after my sister offered my brother some of her burger and he answered, “No thanks. But I’ll take a tater tot or two.”
If only dinner that night had been fresh fried fish with French fries. We could serve it with those pickled peppers that Peter Piper picked. Maybe fried up in some of Betty Botta’s batter. But only if she resolved that bitter butter bother.
Words are funny little rascals. Entertaining. Incredibly useful. Even though they can get a little tricky. Paul gave us an interesting take on them in 2 Corinthians 3:1-4. “Are we beginning to commend ourselves again? Or do we need, like some, letters of recommendation to you or from you? You yourselves are our letter, written on our hearts, recognized and read by everyone. It is clear that you are Christ’s letter, produced by us, not written with ink but with the Spirit of the living God—not on stone tablets but on tablets that are hearts of flesh” (HCSB).
Some people in Corinth had been spreading all the wrong kinds of words about Paul. False teachers spreading lies. Talk about twisted. It was like a lie-twister threatening to destroy his ministry. Word-nado. But Paul knew his ministry was verified in the lives of the people. Lives that had been changed by Jesus—they were his credentials. Living, moving credentials. We’re not talking about wearing just any old ink here. It was a message written on hearts by the very Spirit of the living God.
We do bear His words, allowing the world to read the message He’s written on our hearts. May we be ever legible!
O Lord, may the world read the message you’ve engraved on my heart. Clear. Untwisted. Unmistakable. May it show up in how I walk, talk, live, love. Make my life the easy-to-read version. By Your power, I pray you’ll keep my own words from creeping into that message. Lord, let people read YOU in me, and not me.
The second we stop relying on the Spirit of the Living God to be our message, our flesh is ready, waiting, and all too willing to take over. We can cloud the true message with our own ink, as it were. And it’s not a pretty picture.
Let’s let the living message…live. “Let the spoken word of Christ have its home within you, dwelling in your heart and mind—permeating every aspect of your being” (Colossians 3:16, AMP).
God calls us to leave a mark everywhere we go. Home, work, in the neighborhood—around the globe. Living life empowered by the Spirit of God, depending on Christ to use us to minister to people in a way that changes them—that really will leave a mark. A permanent one.
So maybe I’m a little more tattoo-minded than I thought. And if you’re considering the ballerina skirt idea, I think I could teach it. In pairs. I can tutor two in two tutu tattooing. Too.