Is It Time to Call in an Expert?

examine my heart; search me O Lord and know my heart

Episode 10: Is it time to call in an expert?

Sometimes our course of action isn’t working…and sometimes we don’t know what to do or how to do…and those are the kind of times that I ask- Is it time to call in an expert?

I sincerely appreciate counselors, coaches and mentors. Each of these categories of experts have enriched my life. But, let me explain what I mean with a story.

What’s In There?

It was Mother’s Day and Kimberly wanted us to do something special together as a family. So, she packed us a lunch and we took off right after church was over.

We were excited to begin our search. We had driven almost two hours to find some “big” shark teeth. Which is pretty amazing since we live in Jacksonville which is much closer to the ocean than Gainesville, but that’s one place where the big ones are found.

This is one of the big ones, a Megalodon Tooth. I’ve never seen anything like this.

We parked, grabbed our water bottles and headed for the trail, when a warning sign caught my attention. We stopped and read the sign together. There were high levels of fecal matter in the water, so the health department had issued the warning to stay out of the water. 

All the articles that Kimberly, my daughter, had read in preparation for our search stressed that most of the shark teeth were found in gravel areas of the stream. That meant we had to get in the stream to find them. 

The stream looked crystal clear. Still the official sign warned us to stay out because of fecal matter pollution, what a yucky thought. I realize that water doesn’t have to be littered with visible debris to be polluted. I understand that some of the really bad guys that can make you very sick cannot be seen with your naked eye, so I trusted the sign and stayed out of the water. Kimberly, found 3 tiny black shark teeth when she squatted down over some wet gravel.

shark teeth
She always finds shark teeth when she goes to the beach. Here’s another find at a different location.

It took an expert. 

In order for the health department to determine if the water is safe, someone had to take samples from the creek. Someone that recognizes what fecal matter looks like had to examine the sample under a microscope. They had to count the concentration of fecal matter to know if it was above the high enough for it to be considered pollution. It took an expert, because to me…the water looked great, not great enough to drink, but it looked good enough to swim in for sure! I’m glad that the experts could see what I couldn’t!


David understood that reality exists spiritually as well. He understood that there could be things in his heart that he wasn’t aware of, things that only God could know and see. So he prayed a prayer that I have used so many times.

It is found in Psalms 139:23 NIV. “Search me, God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts.”

Sub-conscious thoughts can trouble us just like our conscious ones! So how do we know what’s going on deep in our minds?


Father, please show me truth. Search my heart. “Is there a lie in my heart that I believe?” 

The truth is; what we believe must be filtered through the filter of God’s Word.

Proverbs 21:2 “A person may think their own ways are right, but the Lord weighs the heart.”

When God exposes a lie to the light of Truth then we can deal with it. It’s not digging up the past, which is very different thing . It’s asking Precious Holy Spirit to show you things that are in your heart and mind that is troubling you or keeping you from walking in victory.

Hebrews 12:15 NLT “Look after each other so that none of you fails to receive the grace of God. Watch out that no poisonous root of bitterness grows up to trouble you, corrupting many.”


axe tooth vine root of bitternessThe axe tooth vine is a thin, wiry vine that grows in the South. It winds around shrubs and trees climbing to the top where it flourishes and I mean FLOURISHES in the sunlight.  I’ve seen it cover and shade the entire top of bushes in my yard. It doesn’t matter how many times I’ve clipped the vine close to the ground they come back with a vengeance! 

When I finally get tired of fighting with the vine, I get a shovel and dig up the root. Sometimes the tuberous root is larger than a large sweet potato. Spiritually, roots of bitterness, fear, un-forgiveness and rebellion must be dealt with for there to be lasting change.

Are you tired yet of just cutting off the vine?

examine my heart; search me O Lord and know my heartFather, search my heart, my motives, my desires. Are they pleasing to you? I want to be pleasing to you. My words and actions flow out of my heart so make my heart pure. Amen.