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Listen to me. Never let anxiety enter your hearts. ~ Jesus (Luke 12:22 TPT)

How do you guard your heart?

As I scanned through Luke 12 this morning, I was struck by how many times in this address, or this collection of addresses, Jesus gave instruction on what I would consider emotional control, or emotional intelligence.

The chapter starts with,

Don’t fear those who may want to take your life, but nothing more. (Luke 12:4 TPT)

Followed closely with,

The one you must fear is God (5)

A few paragraphs later we have,

Don’t worry about defending yourselves or be concerned about hot to answer their accusations. (11)

Next Jesus tells them,

Be alert and guard your heart from greed and always wishing for what you don’t have. (15)

Still further down the page,

Never let anxiety enter your hearts. Never worry about any of your needs, such as food or clothing (22)

And finally,

Don’t let worry enter your life. (29)

So with all that, I ask you, whose in charge of your emotions?

I know hormones and sleep and health (or lack there of) all play into your emotional state. I know there are chemical tricks your body can play on you, and sometimes the forces that would attack your peace are immense.

That’s why we must be super vigilant in the guarding of our hearts.

That’s why it’s imperative to stay in God’s word.

That’s why it’s important to stay in fellowship with folks who will stand with you and help you fight these external enemies.

I’m not saying “suck it up” and “stoic” your way though emotional valleys. There are things that are out of our control. I get that.

But we must do our part.

If you find certain activities bring you down, or draw you into lust, or greed, or anxiety, follow Solomon’s advise.

Avoid it, do not pass by it; Turn away from it and pass on. - Proverbs 4:15 NASB

In the same way we must guard against the feeling of condemnation. Don’t let any outside influence (including this post) wiggle it’s way into a place of condemning you. If you are in Christ condemnation can only come from the mouth of the liar.

Today, make choices that guard your heart.

benheadshot1Thanks for coming by.

Shine where you’re screwed in.

Ben

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During supper, the devil having already put into the heart of Judas Iscariot, the son of Simon, to betray Him, - John 13:2

So how does the devil gain access to a man’s (or woman’s) heart?

The two big access points that come to my mind are eyes and ears – right?

Pretty straight forward.

I learned a song in Sunday School.

Be careful little ears what you hear.

Be careful little eyes what you see.

Ears

"If anyone has ears to hear, let him hear." And He was saying to them, "Take care what you listen to. By your standard of measure it will be measured to you; and more will be given you besides. - Mark 4:23-24 NASB

This came as Jesus taught them parables.

Two parts to this instruction:

If you have the capacity to hear – by all means listen to what Jesus says.

At the same time, be careful what you do listen to.

You must guard your ear gates.

Jesus was a listener.

He only spoke what the Father gave Him to say.

"For I did not speak on My own initiative, but the Father Himself who sent Me has given Me a commandment as to what to say and what to speak. "I know that His commandment is eternal life; therefore the things I speak, I speak just as the Father has told Me." - John 12:49-50 NASB

Eyes

"If your right eye makes you stumble, tear it out and throw it from you; for it is better for you to lose one of the parts of your body, than for your whole body to be thrown into hell. - Matthew 5:29 NASB

Well – that’s motivation to guard what I see!

Earlier, in the Beatitudes Jesus says:

"Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God. - Matthew 5:8

Dietrich Bonhoeffer in “The Cost of Discipleship” says

When you have made your eye the instrument of impurity you cannot see God with it. [Tweet This]

What a brilliant link.

Paul’s advice on the matter:

Finally, brethren, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good repute, if there is any excellence and if anything worthy of praise, dwell on these things. - Philippians 4:8 NASB

So I say again today:

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

Ben NelsonThanks for coming by today.

Don’t forget to shine – that’s why you’re screwed in.

Ben

If you missed yesterday's post "All Access Pass to my Heart" - you might want to check it out.

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During supper, the devil having already put into the heart of Judas Iscariot, the son of Simon, to betray Him, - John 13:2

Who has access to your heart?

I’m not talking about God’s great blood pumping invention.

I’m talking about that part of you where discussions are made, feelings are felt, thoughts are thunk.

You know that place:
The place that tingles with anticipation.
The part of you that forgets to eat when you are in love.
The part that doubles up on the comfort food when your stress rises.
The part that pushes salty tears down your cheeks when you are moved.
The place where the big decisions are made – your personal board room.

Train Your HeartWho gets to write on your heart?

having eyes full of adultery that never cease from sin, enticing unstable souls, having a heart trained in greed, accursed children; - 2 Peter 2:14 NASB

Who decides on your heart's training routine? [Tweet this]

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

Think on this – will you?

Ben NelsonShine today.

Ben

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