Why Guard Your Heart?

During my college days, I would attend movies that I knew my parents would not have approved of. I was away from home, and it was easy to justify doing some activities. I wasn’t interested in the Holy Spirit’s uncomfortable presence. And you want to know the consequences of that willful behavior? I’ve always remembered that time. I thank God that He forgave me, but He left the memory. But I thank God for the memory because later, it informed my decision to be careful of my media intake. He left that responsibility to me, and He left it to you too.
Guarding your heart is more than media intake. Are the people closest to you striving to guard their hearts too? God cares about the company we keep(I Corinthians 15:33). He cares about our attitudes in every area of life, from how we care for our bodies to how we treat others. Additionally, I have several articles on this site about the importance of a morning quiet time with God. And other articles on scripture engagement. These kinds of activities help us guard our hearts.

The heading of Proverbs 4 is “Get Wisdom at Any Cost.” With that heading, we can know God cares about our hearts. It is an understatement to say that from a physical standpoint, our heart is vital to our life. I think God looks at our spiritual hearts the same way. We must intentionally care for it. It is vital to our spiritual life.

Proverbs 4:23 – Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it.

Sometimes adults believe they can watch, read or do whatever they want because they are adults. Societies determine a legal age to do certain activities, and some Christians adopt this way of life, thinking if an action is considered legal, then it is ok to do. The Bible doesn’t teach this. God commands us to guard our hearts.

Why guard your heart? Obviously, because the Bible says so. A few others are listed below, and you might have one to add. Please leave a comment to share if you do.

Reasons to Guard Your Heart:

  • To intentionally choose purity. You want the Holy Spirit to be at home in your heart(Matthew 5:8, Psalm 51:10).
  • To have a greater desire to meet with God. This desire increases when darkness decreases(Psalm 42:2).
  • To have godly wisdom to pass on to your children and grandchildren, and friends(Proverbs 1:8-9).
  • To be a good example. If you are a Christian, then you are a new creation (2 Corinthians 5:17). Christians and lost people need a good example.
  • To have a beautiful mind, plus, thinking about “these things” is easier(Philippians 4:8).
  • To use your time wisely since much of the harm to our hearts comes by way of media affecting our eyes and ears (Matthew 13:15).
  • To decrease anxiety because what we read, watch, and listen to impacts our spirit(I Corinthians 6:12-13, Matthew 6:22-23).
  • To fellowship with God because whatever is filling your mind has your attention. You can’t enjoy God and His presence with distractions(Psalm 16:11).
  • To have a filter for what comes out of your mouth. If you aren’t guarding your heart, then your mind is not the mind of Christ(2 Corinthians, chapter 2). If your mind is dark, then your mouth will reveal it(Matthew 15:18).
  • To have a strong mind since your mind is supposed to be used to understand God’s will. It is renewable. The sooner you guard your heart, the sooner you will know all that God has for you to know( Romans 12:1-2).
  • To have more peace by allowing the Holy Spirit to permeate your mind. Your anxiety level diminishes and your joy increases(Romans 8:6).
  • To lose the desire for the things of this world. Greed will decrease. Your eyes will be opened to all God gives to you straight from His loving heart materially and spiritually(I John 2:15-17).

Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your bodies. I Corinthians 6:19-20

Think about what you let in. In children’s church, we sang a song with this line, “Oh be careful little eyes what you see.” The internet is wonderful and beneficial in many ways. Like a library, it has great content, but just like a library, it has sinful content too. The words to the music you listen to in your car (even if it is from your high school days)may be causing your mind to linger in places that keep you from God. Are your podcasts filling your mind with God’s truth or with the world’s solutions? Are they fueling anger or cynicism? There are so many wonderful books in this world. Find books that cause your mind to be in beautiful places and not fantasize, crave violence, or encourage careless speech.

We will never be perfect until Jesus comes again, but we are to strive to be more like Him each day and to bring glory to Him with our lives. Everyday choices show that we care about our relationship with Him. Think about your choices. Without comparing yourself to your friends, ask yourself, “Am I doing all I can to guard my heart?”

You’ve just read another Winning Way to Follow Jesus. If you like what you read, please add your email and press subscribe. I’d love to have you as a reader. Blessings.

How to use this article:

Personal Bible study – Look up every verse and write it, say it, pray it. Decide what you can do more to guard your heart.

Go over it with any new believer or with your children or grandchildren, nieces or nephews etc. Discuss more ways to guard your heart.

Memorize some of the scriptures.

©Valerie Rumfelt

Easy Recipe

The theme of my website is “Winning Ways to Follow Jesus,” and taking care of our bodies is a winning way to follow Jesus. So in this article, I have a healthy, easy recipe to help you out this weekend and spur you on toward love and good deeds(Hebrews 10:24). But since we’re on the topic of taking care of our bodies, let’s look a minute at verses from scripture that go along with this idea. These are not all verses that apply to this topic.

I Corinthians 6:19-20 – Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God? You are not your own, for you were bought with a price. So glorify God with your body.

Every follower of Jesus has the Holy Spirit. He comes to live in us at the moment of salvation. We belong to God. He is our master from that point, so our bodies are to glorify Him.

Ephesians 5:29 – For no one ever hated his own flesh but nourishes and cherishes it, just as Christ does the church…

We are not to hate our body. Jesus had a real flesh and blood body, which was given to pay the price for my sin and yours. Our body is His temple. How can we hate our body? We can make daily choices to lovingly care for it and protect it.

Ephesians 2:10 – For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.

God has work for each of His children to do until the day we die or until Jesus comes again. When we fail to care for our body, His workmanship((Genesis 2:7), then we will feel bad. Then we don’t have the energy or desire to do the works God has for us to do. We will miss out on what He had planned and lose our purpose.

Have fun researching this topic for yourself. And enjoy this tasty recipe!

Roasted Vegetables:

Wash 2 boxes of cherry tomatoes and dry

Open 1 frozen bag of vegetables(keep frozen)

Combine tomatoes and vegetables in a bowl

Drizzle olive oil on the tomatoes and vegetables

Add your own spices. Last night I used garlic powder and a little salt, and generous pepper

Stir until all is covered with oil and spices

Spray oil on a foil-lined pan and arrange tomatoes and vegetables on pan

Bake on 400 until tomatoes pop and vegetables are browning

1st picture – tomatoes and frozen vegetables:

2nd picture – roasted tomatoes and frozen vegetables

Serving suggestions:

Serve as a side dish

Serve over pasta and mozzarella

Serve over rice

© Valerie Rumfelt

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