Proverbs 4:23 NLT
Guard your heart above all else, for it determines the course of your life.
Such a short verse, but it speaks volumes! The first time I got the concept behind this verse was the first time my husband and I had the privilege of studying the "Life" curriculum that was put together by Chris Hodges, senior pastor at Church of the Highlands in Birmingham, Al. It was our first time to attend a Life group/ small group. It was held by our pastor at his house.
My husband and I had been in a church our whole lives. We had long believed ourselves Christians. However, the more we studied and the deeper we got into the curriculum the more I began to doubt that I had ever truly understood what it was to be a Christian before.
One of the biggest epiphanies I had during this study was from the verse above. Broken down, it basically says what ever you put into you, will come out! The things you watch and listen to go straight to your heart. Think about it in terms of consumption. When you watch or listen to something you are consuming it. You are taking it in. Even if you don't realize it, you are. And what goes in will come out. Either in your words, your actions, or your beliefs.
Let me give you an example; if you listen music or read books that have a lot of profanity, you will be more prone to cuss yourself. People who watch a lot of violence tend to be violent. If you read your Bible daily, watch preaching most of the time, and only listen to Christian music, you will talk about Jesus, you will think about Jesus, and you will act like Jesus. Surrounding yourself with the word helps you to stay Christ-minded!
It's really a very simple concept that makes a lot of sense! What goes up must come down and what goes in must come out. Do guard what you put into yourself. It is so important! And if you have children guard what you let be put into them. It all has an effect. Let's try to keep the effects positive.
Let us make a true effort to guard our hearts. We are surrounded by evil. Evil that is usually very cleverly disguised. Let us be ever vigilant, and protect ourselves and our children from having a heart filled and overflowing with the evils of this world!
Thank you for reading my devotion! I hope it blessed you in some way! If you need prayer, have questions, or if you just need to talk to someone, please feel fee to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org