Are you taking the time to fuel your heart or are you just depleting it?
MARCH 17, 2022
Matt Heard: Are you taking the time to fuel your heart or are you just depleting it? Let’s talk about it on Key Life.
Welcome to Key Life. If you’ve been trying to earn God’s approval, we invite you to hang out with us. Steve invited our friend Matt Heard to teach us all this week. Matt is a speaker, teacher, writer, pastor, coach, and the author of life with a Capital L.
Matt Heard: Matthew, thank you. I want to ask you and everyone in our audience today, how’s your heart doing? We’ve been spending all week asking that question, talking about how and why your heart matters so much, unpacking Proverbs 4:23.
Above all else, guard your heart, for it’s the wellspring of life.
Our heart is not just our emotion, it’s a control center of who we are. It includes our emotions, but it’s like the hub of a propeller, one blade of that propeller is our emotions, the other is our mind, and will. And so, a healthy heart means, I’m thinking deeply and feeling authentically and I’m acting intentionally. As a human being, yes, but to especially as a follower of Christ, It enables us to thrive, instead of just survive, to live and not just exist, to experience the gospel and not just know the gospel,. You know, here at Key Life, we talk so much about the grace of God and grace is a heart matter, Hebrews 13:9 said.
Do not be carried away by all kinds of strange teachings, it’s good for our hearts to be strengthened by grace.
And so, when I’m grappling with grace, it involves my mind, what I think about God, his posture towards me. And it involves my will, how I behave in response to the grace that he’s lavished on me, but it also impacts my emotion. Grace and the gospel are all heart matters and my heart is necessary, for me to engage with my journey in the way that God wants me to. So, go back to that verse that we’ve talked so much about.
Above all else, guard your heart.
Guarding as an offensive thing, as well as defense. And it’s important for me to pay attention to what fuels my heart, what strengthens my heart, and also to avoid the stuff that depletes it. I have three sons. My wife will tell you she has four boys, but three of them are sons. And as they were growing up, I had started awakening to this whole issue of the importance of the heart. So, I tried to bring them along on my journey sometimes to their benefit, sometimes not. But I started referring to them as warrior poets, you know, from Braveheart. Guys that are strong, but also a pliable before God, that tough and tender combination. But in the midst of all that, Proverbs 4:23 was a big deal.
Above all else, guard your heart, it’s a wellspring of your life.
And I started saying a phrase to them, and fight for your heart, fight with your heart. And I’d shorten it to those eight letters FFYH FWYH and I’d put those on sticky notes before a big game or a big date or a big test. And it just became part of our lingo. In fact, to the point that the boys ended up wanting to do a coat of arms, kind of, for the family, with that FFYH and FWYH. One time, they said, dad, could we get tattoos on our chests for that? And again, then they, while I’m still dealing with that question, they said, and if we do, we want you to do it with us. And, I won’t tell you what we ended up doing, but I will tell you I was moved deeply by the fact that my boys wanted to put a reminder of Proverbs 4:23, that they would be reminded of every day when they looked in the mirror. And by the way, when people ask, well, did you get the tattoo? They’ll say, and I’ll say, what’s more important than what’s on the outside of my chest is what’s going on inside yours. The bottom line though of that is that our hearts are both battleground and dance floor. It’s a place where severe issues are dealt with, despair, difficulties. It’s where beautiful things are dealt with, delights, the dance of our journey. Both are necessary, but I need to make sure that I’m guarding my heart in such a way that I’m fueling it. So, let me give you five fuels, that I need to throw on the fire of my heart on a daily basis. One is submission. They’re all going to start with S, as good preachers always do. Alright, so that hopefully you’ll remember them, but the S is the submission, we’ve talked about that some, where like that soft play-Doh, not the hard, remember the sound of the hard Play-Doh. I’ve still got that on the desk here in the studio. You know, hardening of the arteries is bad, but not nearly as bad as hardening of my heart. And Psalm 81 verse 12 says, God says.
So I gave them over to their stubborn hearts, to follow their own devices.
That stubbornness can come from rebelliousness or woundedness, but bottom line, it results in a heart that’s resistant, instead of submissive. Peter says in I Peter, 3:15.
In your hearts set apart Christ as Lord.
Do that in your hearts. So that’s one, submission. Another Scripture, how do I approach Scripture as a religious textbook? Jeremiah approached it very differently in chapter 15, verse 16 he says.
When your words came, I ate them, and they were my joy and my heart’s delight.
So, when I’m looking at Scripture, when I’m reading Scripture, When I embrace Scripture, with my will, with my mind, and my emotions. Or is it just mind? Do I just go to Scripture for truth? Remember Jesus says, he’s way in life as well as truth. And if I’m reading Scripture as way, it will be corrective in my life and my will will be engaged. There will be that restorative aspect of the life that only Jesus can give us. A third fuel, so to speak, piece of wood to put on the fire of my heart is single heartedness. I know you’ve heard of single-mindedness, but I think single heartedness is probably a better term because it encompasses not just my thinking, but my feeling and my doing. You know what a flexitarian is, have you heard of those guys? They were the people that, who are primarily vegetarians, but not always. If a really good steak comes along, they become a little bit more flexitarian than vegetarian. There’s a singleness of heart that’s necessary, for me to not be a flexitarian, when it comes to my posture before God. Jeremiah 32:38 says.
They will be my people, and I will be their God. And I will give them singleness of heart and action.
At Psalm 86 verse 11 says.
Teach me your way, O Lord, now walk in your truth.
Give me an undivided heart. May I make sure that I’m not trying to go both ways at once, but to have a singleness of heart. A fourth fuel is supportive relationships. You know, relationships can be damaging to our heart. We all know that. But are we surrounding ourselves with people that are for us and for our heart, Philemon 7 says.
Your love has given me great joy and encouragement
man, I love this.
because you brother have refreshed the hearts of the saints.
Do I have heart refreshers in my life? Probably a more important question. Am I being heart refresher to other people? Paul talked about to the Colossians in chapter two, verse two, he said.
My purpose is that they may be encouraged in heart.
Am I encouraging some people in heart? Remember those high school booster clubs? I don’t know if they still have those, but I need a booster club for my heart and you need one and we need to be members of other peoples booster clubs because it’s a way for us to guard our heart above all else, so that we can experience the well spring of the life of Jesus. A fifth one, a fifth point of fuel is savering. So, it’s not just being submissive. It’s not just having Scripture as part of my diet and being single hearted and having supportive relationships. But am I savoring my journey? I mean, have you ever eaten Skittles or M&M’s, my guess is you chewed them. You don’t swallow them, without tasting them, without savoring them. And Paul in Philippians chapter four, verse eight. He’s talking about the peace of God guarding our hearts and our minds in Christ Jesus. So, it’s in that context, he says.
Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable, if anything is excellent or praiseworthy, think about such things.
Savor them. I was speaking at a conference in Seattle a couple of years ago, and I was out on the pier at sunset and I started paying attention around me to this amazing sunset. And I looked and I counted. There were 25 people, close to me, just against the fence or sitting on benches. 24 of those 25 people were looking at their phones. That’s not heart food. Make sure that your Psalm 46:10 is in it, it says.
Be still and know that I’m a God.
Mary Jean Irion says, don’t ignore the normal days. It’s a poem she wrote years ago, she said.
Normal day, let me be aware of the treasure that you are. Let me learn from you, love you, savor you, bless you before you depart.
So, I want to encourage you. In the course of your journey on a daily basis, be intentional about your heart.
Above all else, guard your heart, it’s the wellspring of your life.
And it’s, what’s going to enable you to thrive, instead of just survive, to experience the dance of the gospel and not just know the doctrine of the gospel, to be able to engage with the realities, both of your dispairs and your difficulties and your pain, but also the dreams and the delights of knowing Jesus and following him. Above all else, make sure you seize this day, fuel your heart, fuel the hearts of the people around you and see how different the gospel tastes as a result. I’m grateful that you journeyed with us this week and as a result of paying attention to your heart and paying attention with your heart. I hope you thrive today.
Thank you Matt Heard. Hope you enjoyed this series for Matt as much as I did. And if you missed any episode or if you just kind of want to dig in and study further, remember that you can listen anytime you want for free at KeyLife.org. Steve, will be back tomorrow for Friday Q&A. Always a good time, when he and Pete Alwinson sit down to answer your questions. Do be sure to join us. So, here’s a question for you to ponder. Have you considered the fact that Jesus is actually alive right here and active right now? Well, Steve gave a sermon a while back called When Jesus Leaves the Building. In that talk, he teaches from Luke 4 on what happens when Jesus is in the building. If you’d like, we would be happy to mail you that whole sermon on a CD, for free. Just give us a call right now at 1-800-KEY-LIFE. That’s 1-800-539-5433. You can also e-mail [email protected] to ask for that CD. If you’d like to mail your request, send it to
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