This blog introduces our series of English Blogs by Marg Mowczko from Newlife ministry, Australia and their Urdu translations by Javad Irshad from Little Disciples of Jesus ministry, Pakistan . This series will supplement our existing URDU translations of blogs written in English by various ChristianBlessings Contributors. and strengthen collaboration in the English /Urdu teaching and evangelistic ministry and network to the Urdu speaking brothers and sisters internationally.
(This blog is also available below in Urdu .)
Guarding your Heart and Mind
by Marg Mowczko http://newlife.id.au/about/
ABOVE ALL ELSE, GUARD YOUR HEART, IT IS THE WELLSPRING OF LIFE. Proverbs 4:23
I take guarding my heart and mind seriously. There are lots of TV programs, movies, music and magazines that I won’t watch, or listen to, or read. If I want to be saturated and empowered by the Holy Spirit, the last thing I want to do is to suppress him with worldly, ungodly clamour.
While I want to understand and interact with people in our society in relevant and meaningful ways, I believe that watching, listening and thinking about worldly things can give the enemy a faith-destroying foothold into our lives.
I hope you will take the time to read my following thoughts on guarding our hearts and minds.
Guarding your Heart and Mind through the Knowledge of God’s Word
Our heart is who we are, so we must take care to guard it against the corrupting influences that are everywhere in our world. We must shrewdly discern the subtle (and not so subtle) voices that are constantly presenting seemingly appealing ideologies, which are in fact, opposed to God. We must train ourselves, through the Scriptures, to discern good from evil (Ps 119:11).
Solid food is for the mature who by constant use have trained themselves to distinguish good from evil. Hebrews 5:14
Romans 16:19 says that God wants us to be wise about what is good, and innocent about what is evil. (Compare this with 1 Cor 14:20.) We do not need a comprehensive understanding of the Kingdom of Darkness to be able to recognise and defeat its forces; however we do need to be wise about God and his ways; and lead lives that are informed, guided and empowered by his Word and his Holy Spirit.
Guarding our Hearts and Minds through Prayer and Noble Thoughts
Paul promises that God will guard our hearts and minds when we submit everything to him in prayer (Php 4:6-7). Paul continues this theme of a guarded heart and mind in the very next verse, by going on to say:
. . . whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable – if anything is excellent or worthy of praise – think about these things. Philippians 4:8
If we are constantly desiring worldly things, and thinking worldly thoughts that don’t include God, we are letting our guard down. Instead we should follow Paul’s advice:
Set your hearts on things above, where Christ is seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things above, not on worldly things. Colossians 3:1-2
Guarding our Hearts and Minds through Holy and Consecrated Living
As well as virtuous thoughts we also need to live virtuous lives. As representatives of Jesus and his Kingdom, we need to set high standards for ourselves in regard to faith, love and holiness. In several of Paul’s letters, he urges the believers to live their lives in a manner worthy of the Gospel of Christ (Eph 4:1; Php 1:27; Col 1:10; 1 Ths 2:12).
Many modern Christians seem to have lost the desire to live holy, consecrated lives for God. I wonder why that is? When was the last time we heard a message about keeping our hearts and minds pure?
[We were] created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness (Ephesians 4:24).
This is a high calling! However it is important that as we aim for personal holiness, that we don’t impose our standards on others, or judge others who do not share similar standards or aspirations.
God calls us to offer up our bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to Him, and not to be conformed to the pattern of this world. This necessitates having our minds transformed and renewed, because only then can we discern and know God’s perfect will, and respond accordingly (Rom 12:1-2). It is much easier for God to work through us, speak to us, and bless us, when we are living righteous, obedient lives (Jas 5:16b). And it is also much more difficult for the enemy to influence the hearts and minds of such people.
Letting God Guard our Hearts and Minds
As well as the external, evil influences that threaten to infiltrate and sully our hearts and minds, we must also be on our guard from our own internal, sinful pressures.
Jeremiah observes that:
The heart is deceitful above all things and beyond cure. Who can understand it? (Jeremiah 17:9.) God reassuringly answers this question in the next verse: “I the LORD, search the heart and examine the mind.”Jeremiah 17:10
When we continually offer our heart and mind to God, he will search it and sanctify it with his Holy Spirit. King David wrote:
Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. See if there is any offensive way in me . . . Psalm 139:23-24
When Paul was writing about his own internal struggles with sin he recognised that it was only God, through Jesus, who could rescue him from his inherent sinful nature (Rom 7:15-25). Paul was committed to making every thought captive to Jesus! (2 Cor 10:5).
I am committed to being close to God and living for Him. I don’t want anything to jeopardise that. So I am also committed to guarding my heart.
BLESSED ARE THE PURE IN HEART, FOR THEY WILL SEE GOD. Matthew 5:8
The original English blog is found here http://newlife.id.au/christian-living/guarding-your-heart-and-mind/
URDU TRANSLATION – GUARDING YOUR HEART AND MIND
by Javad Irshad <a href="http://newlife.id.au/little-disciples-of-jesus/
- Please share with your family, friends and associates