I was 20 years old, a first semester junior at a small private Christian college in Illinois and majoring in social work and psychology. By this time, I had been a Christ follower for four years.
I recall being in the school’s bookstore one day, and while standing in the checkout line I noticed a clear plastic bowl filled with booklets on the counter beside me.
Out of curiosity, I read the title of one of the booklets, which was “My Heart, Christ’s Home.” It was written by Robert Munger, and the price marked was 15 cents. As I flipped through the booklet, I thought it looked interesting, so I decided to purchase it.
My life as a 20-year-old Christ follower changed forever that day. For the first time since I had accepted Christ four years earlier, I clearly understood what my walk with Christ was suppose to look like with no fakery, no hypocrisy, no phoniness, the real deal from rising in the morning to going to bed at night. Just a plain, everyday, practical application walk with Jesus.
Through the years since buying that booklet, I’ve led many a small group around my kitchen table and Sunday school classes, as high as 50 at a time, through it. Also, I give a copy of it to all my clients and talk about it with them at some point during the counseling process.
Now, back to my story. After leaving the bookstore that day, I went back to my dorm room and, since I had a few minutes before my next class, I decided to read my new booklet.
The first thing I noticed was that it was speaking as though the human spiritual heart is like a house that has several rooms in it. The author started taking Jesus through it room by room.
I read on. The first room they came to was the study or the library. The booklet called it the study of the mind and said it was a small room. It was important because it was the control room of the home and it contained books, magazines, pictures, thoughts and imaginations of the mind.
I read how Munger was embarrassed because of what Jesus was seeing in that room. Some of the books, thoughts, magazines, pictures and imaginations had no business being in there and were shameful. At that point, Munger asked Jesus to clean out his study and replace its contents with those that were pleasing to him.
The rest of the booklet tells how Munger takes Jesus with him through the remaining rooms of his heart’s home. As they go through the dining, living, work, rec and bedrooms, Munger continues to be embarrassed by what Jesus is seeing, and asks him to clean them all out and make each one over with what is pleasing to him.
Finally, after going through almost the whole house, Munger and Jesus come to a stinky hall closet that must be dealt with before Jesus can come in and take up residence in the home. They do this together.
I, personally, read my copy at least two or three times a year during my devotion time. I want the Holy Spirit to search my heart and remind me to keep my heart’s home cleaned out of all that is not pleasing to him. For me to be a real deal Christ follower to an unbelieving world, this is absolutely necessary.
As a Christian counselor, if I could only recommend one book for all Christ followers to read and apply, besides the Bible, of course, it would be “My Heart, Christ’s Home.” If I could only recommend one book for all Christ followers to receive and give as a gift, it would be “My Heart, Christ’s Home.” And lastly, if I could only recommend one book for all of us to have in our bookcases and go through during our devotion time, at least two or three times a year, it would be, you guessed it, “My Heart, Christ’s Home.”
Ephesians 3:16-17 says, “I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith.”
Nita Evans of Columbus is owner of Confidential Christian Counseling, focusing her work especially with ministry leaders and their families. She also is a Columbus Police Department chaplain and a national retreat and conference speaker. She can be reached at 812-614-7838 or by visiting specialspeaker.com.