Guard your heart! – By Jess

Hey Guys! I’m back! 🙂

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I’m Jess, a friend of Oyinlola. I do a guest post on the blog once in awhile. You can read my first blog post here. You might have seen the title of this blog entry, and concluded that it had something to do with love or maybe relationships. Sorry to disappoint, it doesn’t!

Now that you know I’m no relationship expert, let’s talk about your heart.

Biology tells us that the heart is an organ in the body that helps circulate blood; it pumps the blood, moves it all around, and does a lot of bio-stuff. But an important thing about the heart, is the fact that once it ceases to function, a person can no longer stay alive (you probably already know this). And while this heart is very important, there is another heart that’s of a greater importance. The Intangible Heart. This heart is that part of us where our emotions and desires dwell. It is composed of our mind, our will, our conscience and our emotion. Our very lives emanate from the heart. We lead, live, relate, confront, instruct, manage, love, and problem solve from the heart.

Often times we get so carried away with taking care of our physical body, that we neglect to care for those things that aren’t physical. We go to the gym to burn the calories and stay fit; we diet so we can stay in shape; we use so many natural and non-natural creams to get rid of acnes and spots, and  we want to make sure we’re matching the right colors. All these things are good, but it doesn’t stop there. Just as we strive to keep our physical heart healthy, we must also strive to keep our intangible heart sound.

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How do you keep your intangible heart sound?

In the summer of 2016, I started going to the gym everyday, for a week; I haven’t been to a gym ever since. Recently my host mom offered to add me to her gym membership, I screamed NO! (at this point you know I don’t like to go to the gym). Even though I eat a lot of junk food, have a gut, and can’t climb two flights of stairs without losing my breath (lol), I believe I’m fit. And as long as I have this belief, I’m not going to want to go to the gym. And so the first step in keeping your intangible heart healthy is acknowledging that there are things in your heart that make it unhealthy. When you identify those things, you can then work on getting rid of them, and guarding your heart afterwards.

Take some time to think about the things in your heart. Ask yourself: Is there any stuff in my heart that’s toxic?

Perhaps you did something really bad to someone, and the guilt of that offense has taken refuge in your heart, or maybe someone hurt you, and you’ve allowed the hurt to incubate bitterness. You might be surrounded by family members and friends who disappoint you on a regular basis; you’re angry at them, and you’ve let that anger rest in your heart. Maybe you’re that person who likes it when other people do stuff for them, but is never willing to do for others; you’ve welcomed greed into your heart. Guilt, hurt, bitterness, anger, greed, and their counterparts are enemies of the heart. Guilt says, “I owe you;” anger is fueled by the notion that “You owe me;” greed is kept alive by the assumption that “I owe me,” and Jealousy says “God owes me.” I call them the “bad” cholesterol. Over the past couple weeks, I realized that my actions were allowing offense and envy into my heart. I was easily offended and irritated by the things people did, and even those things they didn’t do. I was constantly comparing myself to others, and when I would fall short, a sense of jealousy accompanied it. How do you handle these emotions?

Burn off the calories of guilt,  jealousy, greed, et cetera.

Exercise your heart. If it’s anger, cancel the debt you think they owe you, by forgiving them. If it’s guilt, confess your offense to God and to whomever you have hurt. If it is greed, practice charitable giving. If it is jealousy, have a conversation with God about what you feel you lack. Make your heart do the opposite of the unhealthy things it conceives.

Let your diet comprise of love, kindness, et cetera.

When you discard the unhealthy by doing that which is healthy (adopting a healthy diet), your heart starts to ache for those things that benefits it. Instead of feeling angry at people shortcomings, you heart conceives forgiveness and love.

To burn off offense and envy, I adopted an attitude of gratitude, I prayed for contentment, and celebrated those I compared myself to, out loud. It wasn’t easy, but I had help. After disposing all the toxic stuff, if your heart is to remain healthy, you must guard it.

When your heart conceives a lie or allows the wrong thing to come in, speak the truth and do the right thing.

Watch what you feed the heart, as it influences what it conceives. What do you watch, read, and listen to? Are they healthy?

Don’t let anger, hurt, and their counterparts build up; nip it in the bud!

When you’re overwhelmed with the responsibility of guarding your heart (a very common occurrence), feel free to ask for help ( if you haven’t, you should ask God. He’s the perfect source of help). He can help you watch over, understand, and purify your heart.

Know what’s going on in your heart, discard those harmful emotions and feelings, and guard your heart from its enemies.

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Like, comment, and share your thoughts on the intangible heart.

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