"Above all else, guard your heart, for it is the wellspring of life." Proverbs 4:23
All our life, everything that we say and do comes from our heart. So why do we worry so much about the outside? We try to change our behavior, and our children's, without addressing the state of our heart, or our kids' hearts.
I've done it to my kids. "You'd better be on your best behavior in here!" What I really mean is "You'd better not embarass me or make me look bad!"
I'm so glad that God starts with our hearts. I want to focus on my kids' hearts this year, encouraging them to see their behavior in the light of God's word, rather than how their behavior is affecting me. I want to disciple my children.
It isn't just my children's hearts that need attention. Yesterday, I lied to my husband. I couldn't believe it. Where had that come from? To start with, I rationalized this "little white lie". After all, it wasn't completely untrue. So really I had just stretched the truth a little bit. The feeling in my gut told me that I couldn't justify my sin by giving it a more acceptable name. I lied. Period.
An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. The first part of this proverb gives us direction for prevention. "Guard your heart". Obviously, my heart needs a little more guarding. To what have I been exposing my heart? Time in the Word? Time spent seeking God and His will for my life? Time listening to worship music? or Have I been adopting the world's values as my own?
The good news is: almost immediately after I lied to my husband, my heart was heavy. As soon as I saw him, I confessed and apologized and received his forgiveness. I am seeking to be more diligent and purposeful in guarding my heart and my children's hearts this year.