Proverbs 4:20-27

My children, pay attention to what I say; turn your ears to My words. Do not let them out of your sight, keep them within your heart; for they are life to those who find them and health to one’s whole body. 

Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it.

Keep your mouth free of perversity; keep corrupt talk far from your lips. Let your eyes look straight ahead; fix your gaze directly before you. Give careful thought to the paths of your feet and be steadfast in all of your ways. Do not turn to the right or to the left; keep your foot from evil.

Our hearts hold our belief systems and it determines how we filter or perceive our experiences. If our belief systems are damaged, we will in turn view and interpret our life through a broken lens. In most cases, since we live in a fallen world, we come to the Lord with a damaged filter. We’ve seen things, heard things, and even tasted and touched things that have corrupted our hearts and have caused us to experience this world much differently that the Lord intended. 

To change our filter – we must renew our minds by the word of God. What we put into our minds will eventually drop down into our hearts and begin to change our belief system. Romans 12:2 says, “Do not copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way that you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect”.

The process of renewing your mind by the word of God begins with reading your bible and learning scripture. As you are doing this, ask the Lord to examine you and show you the belief systems you have that are not based on scripture. Once you start identify your false beliefs or thought patterns, you will want to look up scriptures that help you reverse and change them. For example, a false belief could be “because of my past, I am not worthy of love”. To reverse that belief system, you will want to look up scriptures on the Love of God and declare them over your life daily. Think of it as taking your spiritual antibiotic or vitamins.

As we are renewing our minds, we also want to be mindful to guard our hearts regularly by eliminating things in our lives that could damage the condition of our hearts. The passage of scripture taken from Proverbs 4 at the beginning of this devotional, is a fantastic model to follow as you begin the practice of guarding your heart. 

I know that you’re thinking and yes, this is a lot of work but start now! You will be amazed at how much the Lord can transform your life as you live out His word. Don’t forget, you are not alone in this. The Holy Spirit is your helper. Ask the Holy Spirit to strengthen you and guide you through this ongoing process. Eventually, guarding your heart will be your new habit and you will be begin to see yourself and this world the way God intended. 

-Nikki Mayberry