Monday, September 22, 2003

I Want My Heart Back!

It has been a lifetime crusade for Indigo Montoya in the movie Princess Bride, this search for the man with six fingers on his right hand. He explains that this man commissioned Indigo’s father to craft a special sword that took a year to make. The six fingered man returned and demanded the sword at 1/10 the promised price. The man killed his father when he refused. Indigo loved his father and challenged the man to a duel. He spared him but scarred his face on both cheeks. He was eleven years old. "So I dedicated my life to the art of fencing. Then I began to search for the six fingered man. When I find him I will say, ‘Hello, my name is Indigo Montoya. You killed my father, prepare to die.’ But it’s been twenty years and I’m starting to lose confidence."

Later in the film, Indigo finds the six fingered man and chases him through the king’s castle. As he rounds a corner, his enemy throws a dagger into Indigo’s stomach. He gasps, falls against a wall and whispers, "Sorry, Father. I tried. I tried."

His adversary mocks, " you must be that Spanish brat I taught a lesson all those years ago. Incredible. You’ve been chasing me all these years only to fail now. I believe that is the worst thing I’ve ever heard. How marvelous!" Indigo pulls the dagger out as he attempts to stand.

"Good heavens! Are you still trying to win?" jeers the six fingered man. He walks toward Indigo and thrusts his sword. Indigo has just enough strength to block the attack and step forward. "Hello, my name is Indigo Montoya. You killed my father, prepare to die" he mumbles as he falls against a table. Again the murderer attacks. Indigo defends himself a little stronger.

"Hello, my name is Indigo Montoya. You killed my father, prepare to die." He begins to walk haltingly forward as he protects himself against a third attack. With every step he regains strength, "Hello, my name is Indigo Montoya. You killed my father, prepare to die." His passion returns. He moves from defense to offense and shouts, "Hello, my name is Indigo Montoya. You killed my father, prepare to die!"

"Stop saying that!" barks the six fingered man as Indigo backs him against a table. He stabs each shoulder. The man knows he’s in trouble.

"Hello, my name is Indigo Montoya. You killed my father, prepare to die!" Indigo slashes the man’s left cheek.

"Offer me money."


"Power, too. Promise me that." Indigo slashes the man’s right cheek.

"All that I have and more. Please."

"Offer me anything I want."

"Anything you want!" The six fingered man raises his sword to swing. Indigo grabs his hand, delivers the death thrust, and with faces inches apart says, "I want my father back." Indigo drops him to the floor, dead, justice accomplished for his father.

While praying, walking on the treadmill last week, God brought that scene to my mind. Then my soul surprised me. From the depths of my heart came this cry...


I want every corner cleared and free. I want to live and love with passion. I want to be free to be all God created me to be.

I believe that is the cry of your heart, too. The heart-cry of every person.

Problem is that early on our enemy began to steal our hearts. Through temptations, hurts, disappointments, lack of love, abuse, condemnation, legalism, unreasonable expectations, and on and on the list of his methods go. Satan steals a corner here, a corner there. Until either we lose heart or build such a wall around it that we no longer function "with heart."

I’m not talking about feeling or emotions. Rather, I’m talking about the real you. Your heart is who you really are. It is the place of motives, desires, creativity, courage, commitment, dreams. It is the location of conscience, creativity and deepest thinking. Emotion is simply the real you coming out. Your heart is where God gives life. Through giving into temptation we give Satan pieces of our hearts. Through the actions of others Satan causes us to hide our hearts. The result is we live "without heart", without the abundant life Jesus came to give us.

I know what some of you are thinking, "But I’m a Christian, so my heart is already back." Not quite. There is a difference between forgiveness and reclaiming our hearts. Forgiveness cleanses us of the guilt of sin. Reclaiming our hearts, our true selves only comes from allowing Jesus to kick the devil’s influence out, transforming our hearts into His image and living in step with God. Intimacy and freedom.

Indigo was not a murderer, he was a man with a little boy’s heart – still stinging from the loss of his dad.

We still sting from the loss of our heart until we snatch it back and give it to God.

Indigo refused everything, all the offers of the six fingered man. His request for money, power, everything he wanted was only because he wanted to prove that there was nothing of value that could buy him.

When we value nothing more than God’s possession of our hearts, we will begin to reclaim our hearts and be transformed.

Just as the six fingered man mocked our hero, telling him how marvelous it was that Indigo was going to fail, that he wasn’t good enough, that he was a loser, our enemy attempts to convince us of those same lies.

When we cling to the truth of God, we will respond to life "with heart" to be what we were created to be and accomplish what God has created us to do.

How about you? Want your heart back? Then you’re going to have to fight for it, in the power of God. Start today. Tell Satan, "I want my heart back!" Tell God, "I give my heart back to You, do whatever You want." You will rediscover your heart.

"Above all else, guard your heart, for it is the wellspring of life." Proverbs 4:23 (NIV)

NOTE: This edition was inspired by John Eldredge’s book, "Waking the Dead." I highly recommend it in your crusade to reclaim your heart.