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Christian Living

Spiritual Life

How's Your Heart?

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

“How’s your heart?”, this is the question he asked me almost every time we talked, which was often. But I will not hear these words from him anymore in this life. Yesterday, after a two and half year battle with cancer, Scott—my friend and Wisdom Hunter board member went to be with Jesus. I miss him and selfishly I need to hear his loving question, “Boyd, how is your heart?” Scott was a spiritual doctor to me, who cared about my heart’s condition. He knew the quality of my life depends on the health of my heart. He reminded me of my need for the Great Physician.

This teaching in Proverbs says everything in our life flows from our heart. Our hopes, our dreams, our fears, our anxieties, our anger, our forgiveness, our humility, our peace, our greed, our generosity, our love: yes everything, who we are is what’s in our heart. So, above all else our heart needs a guard—God is our guard. When the Holy Spirit fills our heart by faith—He flushes out sin and leaves room only for the fruit of the Spirit. Only a heart guarded by God can bear up under the influence of ungodliness. A heart submitted to Christ in prayer is protected by Christ with peace.

“And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:7, NIV).

Unhealthy heart conditions include: faintheartedness, loss of heart, a broken heart, a foolish and a hard heart. The remedy for these spiritual ailments is a whole heart for Jesus. You may feel fainthearted—weary in your faith and work—if so slow down, rest and allow the Spirit to restore your heart to wholeness. A loss of heart is a reflection of hope deferred, which creates a sickly soul condition, but hope in Christ gives your heart peace and reassurance. Perhaps your heart is broken by past hurt or present rejection. Seek your heavenly Father to be forgiven and to forgive.

Be on guard, for a foolish heart forgets God or even stops believing God. Excessive worry can be a form of atheism. When we are paralyzed by fear and anxiety we act like God does not exist. So, we guard against a foolish heart by gaining a heart of wisdom. The wise seek the Lord to learn who to be and what to do. Most disturbing is a hard heart—someone jaded by injustice and/or the lack of integrity in others. Fortunately, by faith in Jesus our hard heart can be replaced by a heart born from above. A heart from the Lord gives us a heart for the Lord. So, how’s your heart?

“A good man brings good things out of the good stored up in his heart, and an evil man brings evil things out of the evil stored up in his heart. For the mouth speaks what the heart is full of” (Luke 6:45, NIV).

Prayer: Heavenly Father, give me Your heart of love, grace and forgiveness.

Application: To what spiritual ailment in my heart do I need to apply God’s remedies?

Related Readings: Isaiah 26:3; Matthew 6:25-34; John 14:27; Ephesians 3:19, Ephesians 6:18

Copyright 2016 Boyd Bailey. Used by permission from Boyd Bailey at wisdomhunters.com.

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