Nena Arias | April 12, 2021
Above all else, guard your heart [spirit], for out of it flow the issues of life.
Certainly, at some point in your life you have heard the expression “Follow your heart”. People believe that or when they hear it from others, they seem to think they are giving the best and most profound advice when they release this phrase from their lips. Those receiving it seem to think that their heart is always right and will steer them in the right direction. They look at their heart kind of like an accurate compass that will undoubtedly lead them to the right place where they can find true happiness. But the truth of the matter is that our hearts need direction and the control of that is in our hands. The heart can only guide you in the right direction if you have molded and shaped it with the right instructions just like the road signs lead us to the destination where we have selected to go. Our heart is no different; it needs direction.
As you can see the phrase “follow your heart” can not only be misleading but very dangerous. Your heart may be telling you what it craves and desires and that is the dangerous part because all human beings are born with a fallen nature of sin that pulls us in the wrong direction. Jeremiah 17:9 says, “The heart is deceitful above all thing and desperately sick; who can understand it?” Without healing our heart from sin, it can lead us in a dangerously wrong path in life.
Rather than saying “follow your heart”, Proverbs 23:19 tells us to “direct our hearts” in the way we truly want to go. We must store true wisdom, knowledge and understanding so our heart has something good to reach for when we need instruction from God and others. God’s Word is the true roadmap for life. If we humbly tune into God’s voice through the study of his Word, we will find the best direction available. God will never steer us wrong.
Our heart needs to be directed away from lies, lusts, sinful cravings, hatred, inordinate ambitions, revenge, bitterness, covetousness, revelry, overindulgences, envy, and greed. I think you get the picture. A sinful heart cannot do this all on its own. The fashionable sentiment “if it feels good do it” has ruined entire generations of late and is poisoning our culture and way of life. We see the negative results of people just merely “following their hearts” without healing them from sin first through the cleansing power of God through our Lord Jesus Christ. Once you truly surrender to Christ good change must follow, if this doesn’t happen and there is no change in your life, there is something wrong. We must consciously die to the old self and way of living and put a new self by renewing our minds and transforming into God’s thoughts and values for living.
We must always be aware of the war for our affections going on in our heart. We choose where we want to place them. If we let God’s Word speak to us and we obey it, we will be led in the right direction and away from evil and danger. For this to work you must know God’s wisdom and his laws. Ask God for discernment of people and circumstances. Always stay alert! Don’t put yourself in places that will ensnare you. Think ahead as far as you can see in any given situation and make the right decisions before you even get there.
Yes, our hearts need constant direction from the highest form of wisdom there is—God.