“Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me.” – Psalm 51:10
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I’ve been reflecting on my theme passage for the year: Philippians 4:6-7. Remember, it says: “Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God which surpasses understanding will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.”
The last part of the verse declares that God’s peace will guard our hearts. To guard means to protect and to keep safe. Just like we want to protect our physical hearts, we also must protect our hearts spiritually.
The proverbs writer observes a similar concept. “Keep the heart with all diligence, for out of it spring the issues of life” (Proverbs 4:23). We must guard our hearts from the wiles of the devil and the pollution of worldliness. God is concerned with our hearts. He doesn’t look at outward appearances. People care about how we dress, where we live, how we look, and what we drive. But God is not interested in those trivialities. God views our hearts (1 Samuel 16:7).
“But the Lord said to Samuel, ‘Do not look at his appearance or his physical stature, because I have refused him. for the Lord does not see as man sees; for man looks at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.” – 1 Sam. 16:7
The Lord declared, “I, the Lord, search the heart, I test the mind, even to give every man according to his ways, according to the fruit of his doings” (Jeremiah 17:10). So the heart is important to God, and thus should be important to us. We must diligently keep it safe from the evil of this world.
Jesus said, “What comes out of a man, that defiles a man. For from within, out of the heart of men, proceed evil thoughts, adulteries, fornications, murders, thefts, covetousness, wickedness, deceit, lewdness, and evil eye, blasphemy, pride, foolishness. All these things come from within and defile a man” (Mark 7:20-23). The types of actions that make a person unclean before God proceed from the heart. Likewise, the actions that put us in right standing before God come forth from the heart, as well. We must choose what our hearts will be like.
The Lord seeks those whose hearts are after His own (1 Samuel 13:14). Jesus said, “where your treasure is, there your heart will be also” (Matthew 6:21). If we are storing up treasures in heaven, then that’s where our hearts will be – with God. If we are only storing up treasures to have here on earth, that’s where our hearts will be – set on worldly things.
Are you guarding your heart? Are you a person after God’s own heart? Are you storing up treasures in heaven with the Lord? Is your heart right with God? If you answered no to any or to all of those questions, you can make a change.
If you have not made Jesus King of your heart, you can. All you have to do is obey Him in belief, in repentance, in confession, and in baptism and live your life keeping your heart with all diligence for Him.
What will your heart be like? Let’s guard our hearts.
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