At the heart of us is our will. It houses our most intimate selves: deep with longings for intimacy and ecstasy, fragile with wounds from a world gone wrong. The heart is driving our bus, steering according to old stories and unspoken values. If we are to be made new, it begins and ends here, with a refreshed and reformed spirit where the decision engine of our lives is altered. No better world exists without reformations of the heart.
What drives us burns red hot below all our more presentable human layers. The fires of passion for intimacy, meaning, adventure, connection, safety and the rest are the combustion that drives us to action. They are, above all else, what makes us move. These deep smoldering fires make every decision for us even (and most often) when we don't know they're there.
The raw heat of our passions send us wildly bounding around the world, colliding with the will of others and the structural failures of cultures ill-fitted for the deep desires of human hearts. From conception, our deepest spirits are vulnerable to loss, pressure, attack and destruction. The frailty of our deep passions are broken and scarred by a world that will not have us whole.
What is wrong with the world? What is wrong with me? As our passions and wounds collide, our heart must write narratives to provide meaning to this crash of contrasts. We make decisions about what kinds of people are heroes and what kinds are villains provide the prevailing plots for every life event to come.
As life carries on we begin to hold onto things which for us become the keepsakes of a better world. When we don’t know what to do, our values tilt the scales. They act as passions in a more presentable form, a way of holding onto whatever elements of our lives allowed for true passion to flourish free of the curse of wounds.
As our stories gain shape through life, the depth of our passions becomes too much to ask. In the place of passion comes our demands for satiation. We want a better job. A beautiful spouse. More money. Some rest from the pressures we know too well. All of these wants are practical expression of deeper passions, giving us a sense of direction, a compass hinting at where the true north of flourishing might be found.
From our stories come our rules. These rules, often guided by the abilities that come easier to us tell us what will will and won’t do again and what role in the future we must play to secure our deepest passions. These commitments establish the foundation of our identity and begin to work out our preferred role in the world. Wherever a boundary (or consistent lack-thereof) exists it is given power by our commitments.