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EXPLORATION 4 Emotional Poverty

Coming alive spiritually requires us to face the shock of realizing that we are sinners, wholly inadequate to be restored to a relationship with God on our own merits. It requires a genuinely childlike spirit of trust and humility to repent and be renewed.

We’re often too busy to notice or respond to our most profound needs. The emotional poverty of our modern world has left us numb.

We readily forget what it means to exist.

We easily dismiss the reality of our inner lives. We’re hurried and stressed, problem-solving our way through each day, armed with our scientific tools and strategies. Any reference to matters of the heart is irrelevant in a culture of production and self-reliance unless it is immediately useful.

And yet, we are born with a persistent longing for “something more.” Amid the noise of our lives, our heart’s desire is a constant internal beacon pointing us toward Home.

Sometimes a palpable sense of awe bullies its way into our awareness, leaving us wide-eyed and wondering. It happens while holding a newborn baby. Watching a flaming orange sun slide into the sea. Or feeling the raw hunger to “know.” It occurs when the dearest of friends gather for a meal around a gentle fire.

Simple, everyday experiences of mystery, beauty, truth, and belonging lift us from our cultural malaise and awaken our heart’s desire for “something more.” These are signposts to knowing God, who alone can satisfy that desire.

Without being aware of and responding to heart’s desire, we are left to live a self-directed life.


In what ways have you become numb to the invitations of heart’s desire?