Another excerpt from Streams of Living Water. I am loving this book! (emphasis added)
“When the heart is purified by the action of the Spirit, the most natural thing in the world is the virtuous thing. To the pure in heart, vice is what is hard.
So the constant appeal to heart-purification by the voices from the Holiness Tradition are welcome words. It is no vain thing to be returning to our first love over and over and over again. It is an act of faith to continually cry out to God to search us and know our heart and root out every wicked way in us (Ps. 139:23).
We are – each and every one of us – a tangled mass of motives: hope and fear, faith and doubt, simplicity and duplicity, honesty and falsity, openness and guile. God knows our heart better than we ever can. He is the only one who can separate the true from the false; he alone can purify the motives of the heart. But he does not come uninvited. If chambers of our heart never experienced the healing touch, perhaps it is because we have not welcomed the divine scrutiny.
The most important, the most real, the most lasting work is accomplished in the depths of our heart. This work is solitary and interior. It cannot be seen by anyone, even ourselves. It is a work known only to God. It is the work of heart purity, soul conversion, life transfiguration.
… The salvation that is in Jesus Christ is not limited to the forgiveness of sins; it is also able to break sin’s power. We are “created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand to be our way of life” (Eph. 2:10). Sin no longer needs to reign in our mortal bodies. We can walk in newness of life. We can yield our arms and legs and eyes and ears and brain to God as “instruments of righteousness”. We can be “conformed to the image of his Son,” Jesus (Rom. 6:12-14, 8:29).