Guard your heart above all else, for it determines the course of your life. Avoid all perverse talk; stay away from corrupt speech. Look straight ahead, and fix your eyes on what lies before you. Mark out a straight path for your feet; stay on the safe path. Don’t get sidetracked; keep your feet from following evil.
(Proverbs 4:23-27, NLT)
“I didn’t mean for this to happen!” Sound familiar? Most of the time when we get ourselves into bad situations, we typically did not plan for the repercussions of our actions. Sometimes we even started out with good intentions but ended up in a pit of despair.
The wisdom found in this Proverb tells us to guard our hearts for our hearts determine the direction of our lives.
For those of you who like checklists, this bit of wisdom from Proverbs gives us just that. This list reflecting a Clean Heart for Men focus is as follows:
- Avoid all perverse talk; stay away from corrupt speech. Avoid any sensual or sexual talk with or about any woman. When you talk sexually with your wife, typically that is not perverse or corrupt. There are certain conversations that a man should not have with other women. Those conversations only open the door for poor decisions. This also means no sexting, or provocative emails as well. Avoid ALL perverse talk.
- Fix your eyes on what lies before you. Determine your focus! Your focus should be to live a life of sexual integrity, to be faithful to your wife, to live a life pleasing to God.
- Mark out a straight path for your feet. Make a plan for how you will remain fixed on that goal. This may include attending Clean Heart, developing a few friendships with men who are mature in the Christian Faith, being involved in a church community, reading your Bible everyday, etc.
- Stay on the Safe Path. Just like a highway has signs letting you know you are still on the right road, you must learn the signs that let you know you are on the right path for your determined focus. How will you know if you are veering off the path of integrity? You should have some indicators like rumble strips that grab your attention and bring you back on the safe path.
- Don’t get sidetracked. This is why we are to guard our hearts and watch our conversations. We can be so easily distracted and before we realize it our focus is no longer fixed on the right goal and our feet get tripped up and we fall.
- Keep your feet from following evil. Finally don’t let your feet take you anywhere in which you could stumble and fall. Don’t walk to or drive to a place that you know or suspect to have evil opportunities. If you’re married, do not go to a “singles” event; if you’re driving alone stay away from the “red light” districts; and I would also say don’t let your hands take you to the wrong websites.
Today focus on your focus. Determine the correct goal and then start walking toward that goal. Just like a horse with blinders on, keep your gaze from anything other than your goal. Guard your Heart!