Here's A Thought...

Here are some "THOUGHTS" that will hopefully answer some of the questions that you may have about what the Bible has to say about our everyday lives. These articles are here to provoke thought; provide answers, guidance and resources; all in an effort to bring you into a closer relationship with your Heavenly Father!


Tuesday, June 8, 2010


Guard Your Heart 06/07/2010

I was visiting a very old friend of mine recently. He’s not old, just our friendship. I attended the church where he is a Youth Pastor and sat in on their Sunday Bible Study. The man teaching was talking about “guarding your heart”. Initially, I was attentive but really not getting anything out of what he was saying. Then the Spirit hit me. I began to get a very powerful image that I want to share with you now.
I began to get an image of a bank vault. Picture it in your head. Back behind closed doors. Maybe you have to take an elevator to get to it. Perhaps pass through an iron gate and metal detector to get to the vault. Guard standing in front of it, maybe two more out in the bank lobby, and a huge steel door with a ship steering wheel as a big lock. You know the image, you’ve seen them yourself or in a movie. “Ocean’s 11” come to mind for me! I want you to take a minute and really allow that image to evolve in your head and then allow me to start to input some thoughts into those images.
Lets start to think of the contents of our vault. If I had something of value that I wanted to preserve and protect, I would place it in a safe, maybe the bank or safety deposit box. What kind of things do I have that I would want to make that secure? What kind of things, if I had them, would I want to be guarded in a vault, a bank of that level of security? I wouldn’t empty my trash and take it to a bank for safekeeping. Would I take my old dirty underwear to the bank and ask to sign it in? What things would I hold to be precious, irreplaceable, what things of great value would I want in my vault?
In addition, what measures would I take to keep the contents of the vault from becoming contaminated? Would I trust a vault that wasn’t fireproof… waterproof? Would I want someone to put his or her old stinking socks in a drawer under my rare butterfly collection? Would I allow anything into my vault that was perhaps contaminated, poisoned or infested with disease or insects? Do you know what a goat could do to a stack of money? No goats in my vault!
What would the inside of your vault look like?……….
Now lets imagine for a minute, that our heart was our vault. What do we allow into our vaults. What elements of everyday life do we allow into our safe, our heart, our spirit, our soul. Is your vault full of anger and bitterness or does your, “heart overflow with pleasing themes” (Ps 45:1). Are your deposits to your vault full of garbage or do you fill your vault with things of value, things to be treasured. “I have stored up your word in my heart, that I might not sin against you.” (Ps 119:11). “My son, be attentive to my words; incline your ears to my saying. Let them not escape from your sight; keep them within your heart. For they are the life to those who find them, and healing to all their flesh. Keep your heart with all vigilance, for from it flow the springs of life. Put away from you crooked speech, and put devious talk far from you.” (Proverbs 4:20-24) What do you put in your vault? What is it you value, what is it you should treasure? What do the contents of your vault say about you? What do you treasure, what do you value, what do you hold sacred? What are you putting in your vault? “As in water face reflects face, so the heart of a man reflects the man.” (Proverbs 27:19). I have to tell you, in researching this, that last one hit me so hard my teeth hurt!
I, and I think anyone could spend years discussing what the contents of our hearts should be, but for the purpose of our conversation, I just wanted to start you thinking about what it is that is in your heart and what you should be guarding.
Well, I suppose that if we are guarding something, if we have something that we want protected, that we are obviously concerned about loss. If we weren’t concerned about something being taken, we would not lock it up. So the first question I would ask if I were someone in charge of security. What am I protecting? What am I protecting it from? (Long pause for effect.) We all have to acknowledge that there is a thief that is bent on robbing us not only of our eternal salvation, but of any joy that we could have while here in the flesh. We need the grace of Jesus and the protection of the Holy Spirit to guard our vaults, “and give no opportunity to the devil. Let the thief no longer steal” (Ephesians 4:27-28). Paul warned Timothy to, “guard the deposit entrusted to you.” (1 Timothy 6:20) “Thorns and snares are in the way of the crooked, whoever guards his soul will keep far from them.” (Proverbs 22:5)
The next part of our discussion of guarding our heart it discussing who is standing guard over the entrance of our vault? Who do we have installing our lock, who is in charge of our security, who is at the door monitoring what goes in, and what comes out? We must trust in and enlist Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit to be in charge of the security of our vault. There is none other for the job, and no other that I would trust. We need to be vigilant in our effort to make sure that the security to our vault is in place daily. “So we do not loose heart. Though our outer nature is wasting away, our inner nature is being renewed day by day.” (1 Timothy 4:16) We must have God the Father, His son Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit in constant thought and prayer so that the thief does not get his opportunity. “Create in me a clean heart, oh God, and renew a right spirit within me.” (Psalms 51:10)
There is one more thing that I want you to consider in the use of your vault or your bank. If you had obtained something of value, and had taken the time to get it secured in your safe, and made sure that the appropriate guard was on duty. Would you not be very wise in how you would care for and invest your valuable posessions? So I suggest to you. That if you want your precious possessions, your valued treasures to remain secure and to have an opportunity to grow, you should want to invest it, and invest it wisely. You would not take your retirement and place it in risky investments with a chance of loosing it all. You would take time to research, and with careful thought, consideration and planning (prayer), you would make sound decisions for solid investments. So think about what investments you should be making with your time, with your thoughts and with your heart so that the treasures God has given to you will grow. Read the parable of the talents, Matthew 25:14-30. A man gives 3 servants talents, 2 servants double what they had been given for the master; the third buried his in fear. Jesus tells of investing the gifts that we have been given and the consequences of poor choices.
Allow me to leave you with this final thought. “Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal, but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where the thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.” (Matthew 6:19-21)

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