Teaching Kids to Guard Their Heart
How do we teach our kids to guard their heart? Sean points us to truth we can rely on when it comes to keeping the wellspring of life just that…well.
Above all else, guard you heart, for everything you do flows from it.” Proverbs 4:23
The phrase “guard your heart” is thrown around a lot in our Christian culture, and for good reason – you can see above that the book of Proverbs describes it as very important. But why is it so important?
The Bible paints a picture of the heart as a kind of spring that pours out and influences our lives. You’ve probably seen this in your life when you’ve gotten up on the wrong side of the bed and taken it out on someone who didn’t deserve it.
So we’re charged to guard our hearts…but this doesn’t mean we just build a bunch of walls. Instead, it calls us to be wise with the ways it is influenced, knowing that ‘everything flows from it.’ One of the biggest ways our hearts can be affected is through friendships and relationships with the opposite gender, where emotions can be all over the place. How do we guard our hearts in these relationships?
- Rely on Truth rather than feelings. Feelings can change so quickly. The happiness felt today might vanish tomorrow for no reason. Sometimes it just might depend on how hungry or tired we are! But Scripture is always the same! And it teaches us that it will go well with the person who doesn’t walk in the way of evildoers but who cherishes God’s Word. (Psalm 1)
- Take the long view. The truth is, right now is probably not all there is to your life. Want to get “in” with a certain group of people, even though you know they’re not doing the right thing? Five or ten years from now, you probably won’t even live in the same town. Are you dating someone? You are either going to marry them, or it’s not going to work out. Keep that in mind….
- Seek Jesus first. This is the most crucial part. Realize that no other relationship can fill the God-designed desire to love Him and be loved by Him. And that’s a good thing! Because He is always faithful, always good, and always where joy is found. Don’t try to find in another person what can only be found in Christ. Trust me, I’ve already done the research on this one.
Involve your parents in your relationships…friendships and dating. I know, I know, this sounds crazy. But the fact is, your parents have a lot more experience, wisdom, and perspective than you, and they care a lot about your heart. Tell them about the things going on in your life. Ask what they think about it and what the Bible says about it. Trust me, at some point, you’ll be glad you did.