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May 31, 2017, 5:00 AM

What does it look like to guard your heart?

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

We all experience moments when our actions and words don’t line up with what we say we believe or who we say we are. Moments like losing your temper, telling a lie to save face or avoid an ugly truth, and speaking harshly to your kids.  Maybe you’ve given in to peer pressure, fudge some numbers on a business report, or judged someone unjustly. These inconsistencies between our perceived belief and actual behavior leave us in shock, scratching our head, and saying things like, “I can’t believe I did that. I don’t know where that came from. That’s not like me.”


How do we tend to respond to these moments? Our natural default is to tackle our behavior because we can quickly and tangibly deal with our problem and, most importantly, see results. Impulse control and self-discipline are important, but should never be our ultimate goal. If all we do is address our behavior, we ignore the bigger issue, our heart.  What we need is a changed heart. During those moments when we look at the devastation our words, actions or thoughts caused, we are witnessing our heart expressing itself. The true state of our heart is making its appearance. The way in which we express ourselves flows from the condition of our heart. What is on the inside always gets expressed on the outside.


Total transformation of the heart means that we submit ourselves to God’s Truth. If we want our lives to be an authentic expression of God then we must allow God the access He needs to shape and mold us into His image by shaping and molding our heart. To be able to exhibit God’s nature comes from a total transformation of heart. Expression is the authentic alignment between God’s Truth and our behavior, which comes from a changed heart. When God’s Truth is governing and influencing an individual’s life, every facet of who they are becomes an expression.


The formation process starts by examining our heart. This requires transparency and honesty. If we want to align ourselves with God’s heart, we must possess the courage to ask God to search us and make us aware of the areas of our lives that are not expressions of His nature.  When those areas of disobedience are brought to light, we commit our heart to the life long process of transformation and exposing ourselves to God’s Word. Our perspective, our hearts, our lives will all begin to authentically reveal God in response.  


Without evidence of this transformation, our words of a kind and compassionate God will fall on deaf ears. God uses not only our words, but also the way we live our lives to speak His truth to others. Our expression serves as someone else’s encounter. We’re not just called to speak the truth in love, we are charged with living it out as well. When has the true state of your heart made an appearance and expressed itself? How did you respond in these moments?  What does it look like to guard your heart?


This my Prayer: Father God, I desire for my life to serve as an expression of Your love. Lord teach me to give You my whole heart.  Jesus help me to realize that everything I do, both my words and my actions, serve as a reflection of my heart and of You. God open my eyes to see what is taking place on the inside. In Jesus name, Amen.

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