The “Heart Check” exercise is designed to help you reflect on the condition of your heart. Our heart is so important to God.
"Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it." Proverbs 4:23.
I know God has a great purpose and plan for you. We must have a strong heart to be effective in God’s kingdom. It's vital we check our hearts to make sure we remove the barriers that are crippling us from our connection with God.
I was inspired to create this page after listening to this amazing podcast by Christine Caine. Listen below!
The three toxins are guilt, anger/bitterness, and fear.
Let’s talk about guilt.
Christine Caine said it well. “Guilt is only good if it brings you to the foot of the cross.” Amen, sister. Once you have brought your shame, your past, your label, and your sin to the feet of Jesus, you must leave it. Jesus didn’t come to the Earth and die for your sins so that you continue to carry around these burdens. We are not meant to live with guilt; we are called to live light and free knowing God has restored you.
The devil will try to remind you of the past and make you feel guilty again. Don’t buy this, because “greater is He that is within you, than he that is in the world.” 1 John 4:4
So I ask you today. What do you need to let go of?
Let’s talk about anger/bitterness.
This is an especially interesting topic for me as a newlywed. Luke and I did a lot of training on conflict resolution before our wedding day. The #1 lesson we learned in class with regard to conflict resolution is Self-Awareness. I was amazed to learn that the more you know you, and the past moments in your life that have shaped how you think, the better mate you will be. Self-awareness is a major step in understanding how to live, love, understand, and be understood. I pray that you start a self-awareness journey this year, especially when you find yourself upset or harboring bitterness.
Let’s look at the root of our anger. Why do we become angry? Well, anger typically comes from moments when something you value is threatened. So anger is actually a window to your values. How were your values shaped? Some were shaped by both good and bad examples in your life; some were shaped from past pains. Typically, when you lash out there is a hurt behind it, because “hurt people, hurt people.”
This year I found that some of the things I valued came from past pains and insecurities. We all have these from our past. They could be the result of bad teachers, mean peers, unobservant parents or family members. There are so many times in our youth where our impressionable hearts were damaged. The good news is that Jesus wants to strengthen and heal your heart! So, the next time your claws come out, reflect inwardly and ask yourself 'why this issue or value is so strong?' There might be someone in your past you need to forgive. After forgiving you can truly live light and free, the way God intended.
So I ask you today. Who do you need to forgive?
After forgiving, I pray you abide in God’s word to stay focused on who you are in God's eyes.
“But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s special possession, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light.” 1 Peter 2:9
Let’s talk about Fear.
As a girl who was and is still afraid of the dark, this is an interesting topic for me. Courage comes from God, and courage is the key to fulfilling our dreams! If we listen to our fears, we'll be paralyzed. To be a warrior of God, we must call upon the Lord for strength. He gives it freely. Even in the darkest hour, know that His perfect love can cast out fear. Christine Caine spoke well about fear during transitions at Hillsong Conference recently. She said at the threshold of every transition in our lives, the devil will send a spirit of fear. We know this fear is not from God, because God does not send spirits of fear. God sends spirits of peace, courage and love to us. I am so amazed to know that we have the power of Christ Jesus within us! The same power that raised Jesus from the dead is within us! How amazing is that?!
6 Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; 7 and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus. Philippians 4:6-7
So I ask you today: What fear is holding you back?
I pray that you cast out your burdens, fears and any bitterness that has been harboring in your precious heart. A strong heart abides in the word of God. Never stop re-reading the promises of the Lord and learning how God views you.
Healing beings at the foot of the cross and the reminder that we are God’s children. We have a perfect God full of perfect love that can heal. Allow Jesus to move and breathe into these strong holds. He is ready to liberate you!
You. Are. Loved.
Polly and The Planner Crew