Proverbs 4:23-27 (KJV)
Keep thy heart with all diligence; for out of it are the issues of life.
Put away from thee a froward mouth, and perverse lips put far from thee.
Let thine eyes look right on, and let thine eyelids look straight before thee.
Ponder the path of thy feet, and let all thy ways be established.
The ability to possess, maintain and express JOY, regardless of circumstances is a strong measure of the maturity of a believer.
This is particularly true in today’s world where everything from breaking news to pressures from unrealistic targets, unrealizable expectations, failing health, personal inadequacies, insufficient funds due economic crunch among other things all compete with and try to erode our joy, leaving many running on empty with low levels of energy and motivation for life.
In any case, the JOY story starts and maybe also ends here: Guard your Hearts…
Regardless of who you are and the depth of your walk with God, there is always a repercussion in the realm of the spirit when one breaks the ‘Gate Rules’.
…the devil doesn’t pay courtesy visits! Each time he walks through your doors, he is bound to take something: your joy, peace, riches, energy, productivity, marriage, destiny, hopes, dreams or health..
And by ‘the gates’ we mean the entrance to you heart.
Without any invitation.
He doesn’t need any more than an unguarded ‘gate’.
Many scriptures attest to this:
But while men slept, his enemy came and sowed tares among the wheat, and went his way.
– Matthew 13:25 (KJV)
Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour:
– 1 Peter 5:8 (KJV)
And the devil doesn’t pay courtesy visits! Each time he walks through your doors, he is bound to take something: your joy, peace, riches, energy, productivity, marriage, destiny, hopes, dreams or health – always gunning for the very essence of your life!
The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy:I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.
– John 10:10 (KJV)
Your mind is the major gateway to your heart. Whatever passes through your mind has a direct impact on your life and destiny.
This is the sequence as outlined in our text for today…
– What you think, instructs your speech (Prov.4:23-24)
– What you say, influences your vision and life’s outcomes (Prov.4:25)
– What you see directs the course of your entire life and destiny… (Prov. 4:26)
Therefore, if in spite of the depth of your walk with God, your faith, service, commitment, sacrifice, sincerity, prayers, etc. things are still not working …
If there is any gap between what you believe for sure that God can do and the present realities or happenings in your life…
If you’ve been rooted to the same spot in life a day too long…
If things ain’t moving but seem to be getting from bad to worse…
If you constantly fall into mischief and are caught up in a web of problems… Which even sometimes leads you to a place of compromise … All these in spite of the depth of your walk with God…
Then check your gates.
They are most probably unguarded… Your are most probably not thinking right somehow!
People often attribute every one of life’s delays or challenges and every wilderness experience to God. But God doesn’t test with evil! Besides, bad circumstances and delays are not always tests of our faith!
Let no man say when he is tempted, I am tempted of God:for God cannot be tempted with evil, neither tempteth he any man:14 But every man is tempted, when he is drawn away of his own lust, and enticed.
– James 1:13-14 (KJV)!
If you are unsure, please take the ‘Gate Test’ and would you be very honest?
Here is the test:
Please keep a journal today and take an inventory of your most nagging thoughts- especially the ones which scream loudest when you are alone.
And just before you sleep tonight, please analyse your list of thoughts…
What are they about? Are they positive thoughts, or are they full of complaints, bitterness and nagging? Are they full of self put-downs, defeatist thoughts and obsessions about what is not working? Are they in line with God’s standards as outlined in Phil.4:8? Would God feel comfortable to make your heart His abode judging from what passes through your mind?
It is said that nothing can be done for a man with a bad attitude or mindset. No man can help him. Even God wouldn’t.
If you’d pen down your thoughts, you’d definitely notice a pattern… And if you’d examine that pattern carefully, you’d discover that therein lies the very answers to the question of your life’s puzzles…
Thank You Lord for showing me that the outcome of my life is a reflection of my thoughts … A picture of my secrets…
And yet when my foolishness corrupts my ways, my heart frets against You.
Lord, I repent. Please forgive me.
By Your mercies, please grant that I guard my heart with all diligence from today.
Please grant that I think only in line with Your dictates. And most importantly, please transform my life by the renewing of my mind dear Lord, In Jesus’ name I ask it. Amen.
Funmi Adebayo (c) 2014