There’s a common idiom I have heard throughout my life when I come to a point of needing to make a decision; “follow your heart” they said. I frequently hear this idiom used as a response to ideas of the like: “I’m not sure what to do” or “I think I’m in love.” The idiom assumes the decision that is about to be made should come from the result of the heart and not the brain. However, without the brain, the heart cannot function.

So, what do we do in times when the heart says one thing but the brain says another? We possibly go into reflection and meditate, right?

The season of Lent is a time for inward meditation and reflection. We examine our hearts and ourselves during this time in an attempt to grow closer to God and strength our relationship with God. During this time of reflection, we seek within ourselves areas we can better oneself and opportunities to positively engage humanity. However, in this moment, we find ourselves in difficult times with the law. Executive orders threatens lives, the judicial system refusing to hear the people they were formed to serve, law enforcement agencies causing violence against innocent bodies consistently, and local councils creating rules for businesses that exclude people from their services.

The law isn’t looking so good right now.

The laws are more oppressive than serving the good of the people. The law seems to be working against the people it serves. Where is the solution? The resolution? Can this even be fixed? I, for one, believe it can…

Through an urgent and fervent meditation and reflection of the heart. What is so important about the reflection on our hearts that can change humanity, that can change us and the way we think? Well, there is a law that is written on our hearts, and no longer on stones. This law is much greater than the laws human brains contrive.

God’s law… A law of compassion, love, justice, mercy, and grace. These are the laws written on our hearts.

These are the laws that are imprinted internally for us to express externally into the world. When it is stated to “follow your heart,” I take that as a challenge to follow the law of God, the law that is written on my heart. Since the heart and the brain are connected, my brain then will know the actions of love and compassion. My brain will then lead me to the works of justice, mercy, and grace. My brain will know intention and can enter into a state of mindfulness with love and compassion, because the heart will guide the brain as the brain helps the heart function.

So as we reflect internally during this season of Lent and beyond the season of Lent, let us reflect on the laws that are written on our hearts, daily. Let us meditate on the external laws written on stone, such as political and religious laws, and let us use both our hearts and brains to fight for the laws of compassion, love, justice, mercy, and grace.

When they say to “follow your heart;” let us examine our hearts, meditate, and reflect.

Let the laws of compassion, love, justice, mercy, and grace overrule all other laws. Because we were given a law and it is written on our hearts.

Joey Rodil

Joey Rodil is a student at Chicago Theological Seminary in the Master of Divinity program. He moved to Chicago in 2013 from Jacksonville, Florida where he worked in college and young adult ministry for The United Methodist Church. Joey also worked at the University of North Florida in student leadership and programming. He enjoys working in the non-profit realm and hopes to become a non-profit administrator upon graduation. Joey loves the beach, but doesn’t like the sand. Sounds a little strange, but the sand gets everywhere! He enjoys the beauty of the water and relaxing sound of the waves.

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