4 “Hear, O Israel: The Lord is our God, the Lord alone. 5 You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might. 6 Keep these words that I am commanding you today in your heart. 7 Recite them to your children and talk about them when you are at home and when you are away, when you lie down and when you rise. 8 Bind them as a sign on your hand, fix them as an emblem on your forehead.
With All Your Heart
by Burt Burleson, D.Min.
All societies and communities of wisdom know what this text from Deuteronomy teaches. They know how we come to hold what is sacred and true. We make it pervasive, so that it’s all around us all the time. We talk about it inside and out as we’re doing life, as we’re going here and there. What’s central is named at the beginning of a day and at its end. Like a wax seal on a vital, consequential proclamation carefully delivered, we impress what is vital to us onto and into our children. We tie it to ourselves, to wrists and foreheads, we bind it to the pulse of life and to our thinking. We put reminders in our way to see and to touch so that we might walk in remembrance. This is how sacred truths come to reside within, there in our hearts. This cardial truth alive within because it is lived without.
Now to Advent, for sure a season for making what matters most pervasive, all around and baked into our being. In what’s known as the Church Year, Advent is the first season, and, so, it’s a time of beginning again. We start the journey with Jesus again and do so by paying attention to “a voice crying in the wilderness,” and we end the season by celebrating “the true light that gives light to everyone... coming into the world.”
How might you and yours - your family and your community - attend to this season and its mixture of quiet longing and extravagant joy? How will the truths of Advent reside within? Well, impress them on your children, talk about them here and there with one another and as you lie down and awaken, bind them where you’ll feel them and place them where you’ll see them, so as to remember again - re-member - and put back together what is central to who you are.
Learn More About Our Guest Writer
Burt Burleson, D.Min.
Burt Burleson, D.Min., is the Baylor University Chaplain and Dean of Spiritual Life. Dr. Burleson nurtures deep faith, spiritual wholeness, and missional life of Baylor students.
Dr. Burleson is a native Texan who was born in Beaumont and grew up in Dallas. He holds a bachelor's degree from Baylor, a Master of Divinity from Southwestern Seminary, and a Doctor of Ministry Degree from Austin Presbyterian Seminary. After fifteen years in student ministry and pastoral counseling, Burt became the first pastor of the DaySpring Baptist Church in Waco where he served for 12 and a half years. In October of 2007, he left DaySpring to become University Chaplain at Baylor. He and his wife, Julie, have two children; Abby and Brandt.