Heart Guards

AVOID HEARTACHES (1)

Heart Guards

Just checking—how’s your heart today?

I ask because, after feeling what was akin to having an outboard motor fire up inside my chest, I wasn’t so sure about mine.  I went to see my doctor and am now the proud owner of a 30 day—24 hour heart monitor. I hate it! The blinking lights give me the look of a walking time bomb, the wires have friends wondering if I’m recording our conversations, and the bulge beneath my shirt has store detectives dogging me in their quest for shoplifters.

My whining and pity-party began the moment my monitor was glued to my chest, but this morning when I recharged the battery pack, everything changed.  The name of the device, “Heart Guardian” jumped out at me and I immediately saw the spiritual application. “Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it.” Proverbs 4:23 Snap!

While my heart guardian is tracking everything I do physically, alerting me of dangerous heart activity, the Holy Spirit is acting as my “spiritual heart guardian.” He continually monitors and warns me of ungodly thoughts, words and deeds which I need to guard against.  It is what I tell children to think of as the “Holy Spirit Alarm System” God gives them on the day they ask Him to come into their heart and be Lord of their life. It’s important since, “as water reflects the face, so one’s life reflects the heart.” Proverbs 27:19

When my heart monitor vibrates, it’s telling me something’s not right. The feeling I get, that something’s “off” or not right in the way I’m thinking or acting, is the Holy Spirit warning me to guard my heart.  But how?  How do I guard my heart?

Well, it’s no big mystery. The same big three that determine success or failure in all of our Christian living are the same big three for guarding the heart:

  • Prayer (Check out the acronym below!)
  • Meditation on the Scriptures
  • Fellowship and Worship with other Christians.
  • On the day we decided to follow His Son, Jesus, God gave us His Holy Spirit.
  • As we read and study God’s Word and have it in our heart, we are a whole lot less likely to sin against Him. We also come to know we have a spiritual shield of faith to block the attacks of Satan that are designed to destroy us. (Ephesians 6:16).
  • And, each time we come together with other Christians to worship God, we encourage them and they encourage us. Iron sharpens iron. (Proverbs 27:17)

God mentions the hearts of men and women hundreds of times in His Word.

What comes to your mind when you think about your heart?

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This week’s Bonus:

an acronym to help guide you in prayer

Praise: Enter his gates with thanksgiving and his courts with praise (see Psalm 100:4). Sit quietly and thank God for who He is, what He has done, is doing and has promised He will do.

Repent: Spiritual cleansing is needed in order to come near to the throne of God. Tell Him you’re sorry for the wrong things you have thought and done—that you don’t want to be like that anymore. Ask Him to forgive you, help you to change and live the life He created you to live.

Ask: God is never too busy with other, more important things, to listen to your prayers. Tell Him all about everything that’s on your heart—the big stuff and the little stuff.  He cares about you and about every detail of your life.

Yield: The fact that you have brought your prayer list before God indicates your trust that He will, in His time and in His way, show you what to do and how you should go. (see Psalm 143:8). Remember how great, how big and how powerful God is as you leave your prayer requests with Him and say, “Amen.”

 

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