Guard your heart

Proverbs 4:23 Guard your heart above all else, for it determines the course of your life.

Why did this scripture jumped off the pages at me, now, after I have read it and quoted it so many times?  I really could not understand the significance to my life, so I did what I do.  I started looking deeper.  I looked up a few words for the original meaning.

Guard is translated from the Hebrew verb Natsar meaning to guard, watch, watch over, keep

    1. to watch, guard, keep

    2. to preserve, guard from dangers

    3. to keep, observe, guard with fidelity

    4. to guard, keep secret

    5. to be kept close, be blockaded

    6. watchman (participle)

“H5341 – natsar – Strong’s Hebrew Lexicon (NLT).” Blue Letter Bible. Accessed 8 Nov, 2017.

And then I looked up:

Heart is translated from the Hebrew noun leb meaning inner man, mind, will, heart, understanding

  1. inner part, midst

    1. midst (of things)

    2. heart (of man)

    3. soul, heart (of man)

    4. mind, knowledge, thinking, reflection, memory
    5. inclination, resolution, determination (of will)

    6. conscience

    7. heart (of moral character)

    8. as seat of appetites

    9. as seat of emotions and passions

    10. as seat of courage

“H3820 – leb – Strong’s Hebrew Lexicon (NLT).” Blue Letter Bible. Accessed 8 Nov, 2017.

Then I looked up will.

Will is translated from the Hebrew noun Nephesh meaning soul, self, life, creature, person, appetite, mind, living being, desire, emotion, passion

  1. that which breathes, the breathing substance or being, soul, the inner being of man

  2. living being

  3. living being (with life in the blood)

  4. the man himself, self, person or individual

  5. seat of the appetites

  6. seat of emotions and passions

  7. activity of mind – dubious

  8. activity of the will – dubious

  9. activity of the character – dubious

“H5315 – nephesh – Strong’s Hebrew Lexicon (NLT).” Blue Letter Bible. Accessed 8 Nov, 2017.

guardAs I meditated on these definitions, I realized that what goes on in my mind, will, heart, and understanding directs the consequences of my life, determines where my life heads, and has a great impact on not only my life but those in my sphere of influence.  It is my job to carefully watch what gets in my mind.  I have to take thoughts captive and watch what I see and hear.

If I’m really open, my will is where I struggle the most.  My thoughts –  I have learned to take captive and have renewed my mind.  My emotions –  I have learned not to let them run my life.  I do understand who is really in control; yet, I still struggle with trying to control things.  And fail miserably.  I get distracted by passion and desire.  In doing this, I put my will in front of God’s will in certain areas.  It is a harsh reality to face; the things I have placed before Him because I have chosen not to guard my heart.

So how do I truly guard my heart?  How do I surrender my passions, desires and will?  How do I let Him focus me?  It is uncharted territory.  I came across a few scriptures that shed some light on what needs guarding:

These scriptures challenge me because I know that there are times that I prefer the comfortable, times where I have placed everything except God in front of my husband, and allowed my peace to walk out the door.  There are times that I have allowed my desire to defend myself to turn my innocence into wrong-doing.  I need only look at the things I have not yet found success in to see that discipline is still lacking.  And while I might not be materialistic or income oriented, there are still things that I intensely selfishly desire.  There are truths that I have learned from the Word that I have not applied, despite multiple reminders from the Holy Spirit.

Yet despite all my short comings God has given the greatest gift.  He forgives me and allows His grace to fill my gaps as He grows me.  I know that as He teaches me to guard these and other areas of my life, He is in control.  As I surrender my will to Him, He will meet me and allow His light to shine brighter in and through my life.


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