“Do you see those yellow weeds in that field?” Tom moaned one morning as we looked out the kitchen window. “Every single one contains millions of seeds, all headed in our direction. It is impossible to keep them from our yard.”
Of course, there is no possible way to keep seeds from blowing into gardens. Just as there is no way of preventing unwanted, unhealthy ‘seeds’ finding a place in an unprotected heart.
“Guard your heart, Barb.” The whisper was so timely, so necessary… encouraging.
I have opened my heart lately to let bad seeds in. Seeds of fear, doubt and worry are flourishing in my former trusting heart. So I didn’t need to ask why I was receiving such a reminder. I recognize my heart is in trouble; I clearly understood this gentle command. Tears sprang immediately as I looked at the weeds, listening to the quiet nudge to guard my heart. Why is it easier to focus on the obnoxious weeds in the fields beyond us rather than on the lovely spring flowers blooming near the window?
You see, I am much saddened and distracted by the pain portrayed on the media screen, by the anguished tears of an adult child, and my own health(heart) issues*** (see personal note at end.) I have simply become hard of hearing God’s whispers. Negative seeds are springing up around me, squeezing all signs of peace and hope. I had forgotten how to protect my heart. Easter seems so far away… in heart and home.
“Above all else, guard your heart… for it determines the course of your life… everything you do flows from your heart.” Proverbs 4:23. Guard is used over 800 times in the Old Testament… 200 of those relate to our emotions, our thought life. It literally means to take care of, to treasure this (mind) that defines who we are.
I have lost my way these dark days. My heart — i.e., my life, suffers from worry and fear. So many intrusive seeds preventing me from tending carefully to my heart.
The heart is who we truly are. It is in the inner code. It can be wounded. It can also be healed. It can be strengthened, renewed, and even changed. J.B. Shreve
If we allow toxic seeds to find a home in the heart, the course of life changes. Suddenly fear, worry, anger capture all of life. One must be diligent to protect it from any danger that would keep us from listening to the very whispers from God’s heart.
How am I to take care of my heart? How do you care for yours? A difficult question in these days of massive pain plastered on the screens. How does one lovingly care for the intimate place from where all feelings, thoughts and actions flow? How do I treasure this most important gift? Quiet praise music, truth of Scripture, slow walks, a spouse’s hug, a friend’s call… all can help in the vicious assault of ruthless seeds blowing near and taking root. But I have the major responsibility…
These seeds have found a spot in our gardens and produced ugly weeds. Tom and I have literally pulled and dug hundreds to make way for the perennial flowers. I mean, they will grow anywhere… even at the front door of our lives.
Years ago, I had these words posted near my desk… I must do what I can, and let God do what I can’t. I can pull the weeds…
Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God which transcends all understanding, will GUARD your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Philippians 4: 6-7.
This Maundy Thursday of Easter week, may we all be on guard, protecting our hearts from fear. Let not your heart be troubled… trust. John 14:1
*** I am in process of knowing what is causing some medical heart issues. Physical symptoms of shortness of breath, unusual fatigue affect my mental acuity, as well. If this blog is a bit disjointed… and late… you will know why. 🙂