“Watch over your heart with all diligence,

For from it flow the springs of life.”

Proverbs 4:23

When I watch over my heart, with diligence, I examine it from all angles. 

I look in every realm to see what it looks like. What exactly is forming in:

  • my spiritual life?
  • my emotional life? 
  • my relational life? 
  • my financial life?
  • my ministry life?
  • my work life?
  • my body? 

From those angles, I can determine what needs changing. 

Yet, it’s easy to let this slide, or to miss things that are not obvious.

Now, I am not known to buy cars frequently. I usually keep them until they are worth about a dollar and a quarter, truly ready for the junk yard. 

Last month my car needed its regular oil change. That was all I thought it required.

Yet when the technician got it up on the rack, he could see the underside of my car from perspectives I cannot attain. 

Not only could he see what was happening, but he sounded the alarm concerning urgent recommendations.

While the dealership wanted me to open my wallet immediately with no discernment offered, a trusted car guy interpreted the situation with discernment and diligence. As he named and explained each item, he prioritized what was needed immediately, in the near future, and before a year passes. 

As he showed me the exact same things the dealership showed me, he explored options. “Minor repairs are worth the time and effort; however, the car, over 16 years old now, isn’t worth major repairs.” In other words, everything might need fixing but fixing everything might not be the next step. His perspectives coupled with his wisdom gathered over hours and hours around cars opened my eyes to what is needed as well as what will be the end of the road for this long-time transportation.

Likewise, I’m invited to examine my own heart for my heart matters to God. Those matters matter to how I enter life with others each day. God and I carry on conversations about my interior spaces: repairs needed now, in a bit, and further down the road. 

Not only do I need to maintain a regular self-examination and examine things with God, I also need others’ eyes to tell me what they see.

It’s one of the reasons that as a spiritual director, I have a spiritual director. As one who offers the ministry of spiritual direction and the business of being an editor, book coach, and writing coach, I seek guidance from my spiritual direction supervisor as well as business coach who both have a deep heart for God and His perspective. 

Over the years, my group of deep-hearted friends pray with and for me, sharing their perspective as to what they see in me from different angles than where I observe. Mostly, to examine I spend time in long conversations with God.

We examine ourselves so we can discover where we are running smoothly and where we have need of repair. We take those perspectives on to God as well as to trusted others.

“Watch over your heart with all diligence,

For from it flow the springs of life.”

Proverbs 4:23

What’s one place we might watch over our hearts this week with a new diligence?

Featured photos are courtesy of Frank MckennaSimon Berger, and Sean Oulashin on Unsplash.

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