February is Heart Health Month

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Having a Healthy Heart

Caring for Your Spiritual Heart

 

February 3, 2018

Keeping a Spiritually Healthy Heart:

“Keep thy heart with all diligence” is the counsel of the wise man; “for out of it are the issues of life.” Proverbs 4:23

As man “thinketh in his heart so is he.” Proverbs 23:7

The heart must be renewed by divine grace, or it will be in vain to seek for purity of life. He who attempts to build up a noble, virtuous character independent of the grace of Christ is building his house upon the shifting sand. In the fierce storms of temptation it will surely be overthrown. David’s prayer should be the petition of every soul: “Create in me a clean heart O God; and renew a right spirit within me.” Psalm 51:10. And having become partakers of the heavenly gift, we are to go on unto perfection, being “kept by the power of God through faith.” 1 Peter 1:5

Keeping a Spiritually Healthy Heart:

Diligent heart-keeping is essential to a healthy growth in grace. The heart in its natural state is a habitation for unholy thoughts and sinful passions. When brought into subjection to Christ, it must be cleansed by the Spirit from all defilement. This cannot be done without the consent of the individual. {3BC 1157.2}

When the soul has been cleansed, it is the duty of the Christian to keep it undefiled. Many seem to think that the religion of Christ does not call for the abandonment of daily sins, the breaking loose from habits, which have held the soul in bondage. They renounce some things condemned by the conscience, but they fail to represent Christ in the daily life. They do not bring Christlikeness into the home. They do not show a thoughtful care in their choice of words. Too often, fretful, impatient words are spoken, words which stir the worst passions of the human heart. Such ones need the abiding presence of Christ in the soul. Only in His strength can they keep guard over the words and actions. {3BC 1157.3}

In the work of heart-keeping we must be instant in prayer, unwearied in petitioning the throne of grace for assistance. Those who take the name of Christian should come to God in earnestness and humility, pleading for help. The Saviour has told us to pray without ceasing. The Christian can not always be in the position of prayer, but his thoughts and desires can always be upward. Our self-confidence would vanish, did we talk less and pray more (The Youth’s Instructor, March 5, 1903). {3BC 1157.4}

Cultivate a love for meditation, and cherish a spirit of devotion. Spend necessary time in searching the Scriptures, and prayer. As exercise increases the appetite, and gives strength and healthy vigor to the body, so will devotional exercises bring an increase of grace and spiritual vigor. {3BC 1157.5}

To discipline the mind to dwell upon heavenly things, will put life and earnestness into all our endeavors. Our efforts are languid, and we run the Christian race slowly, and manifest indolence and sloth, because we so little value the heavenly prize. We are dwarfs in spiritual attainments. It is the privilege and duty of the Christian to be “increasing in the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ.” Ephesians 4:13

The affections should center upon God. Contemplate His greatness, His mercy and excellences. Let His goodness and love and perfection of character captivate your heart. Converse upon His divine charms, and the heavenly mansions He is preparing for the faithful. He whose conversation is in heaven, is the most profitable Christian to all around him. His words are useful and refreshing. They have a transforming power upon those who hear them, and will melt and subdue the soul (The Review and Herald, March 29, 1870). {3BC 1157.6}


 

Having a Healthy Heart

Caring for Your Emotional Heart

 

February 10, 2018

Keeping an Emotionally Healthy Heart:

A cheerful heart is good medicine. Proverbs 17:22

Forgiveness for others who may have hurt you:

  • Let go of any anger, bitterness and resentment toward another that you may have

  • Let go of hurtful behavior or words others may have spoken to you – surrender it to God.

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  • Colossians 3: 13-17

- Forbearing one another, and forgiving one another, if any man have a quarrel against any: even as Christ forgave you, so also do ye.

- And above all these things put on charity, which is the bond of perfectness.

- And let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to the which also ye are called in one body; and be ye thankful.

- Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom; teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord.

- And whatsoever ye do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God and the Father by him.

- Cherish time with friends and loved ones.

- Be content in all things


 

Having a Healthy Heart

Caring for your Mental Heart

 

February 17, 2018

Keeping a Mentally Healthy Heart:

 “Whatsoever a man “thinketh in his heart, so is he.” ~ Proverbs 23:7

Be mindful of what you think about. The connection between mind and heart are intricate and effects us spiritually, emotionally and physically, a very unique connection.

Fix your thoughts on what is true, and honorable, and right, and pure, and lovely, and admirable. Think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise. Philippians 4:8

Does it make you wonder how truly by “beholding we become changed”? If we are putting our minds on less wholesome not so honorable or pure things – [the books we read, television or movies, entertainment or other] that distracts us our minds are not strengthened or challenged with truth, holy or honorable things.  Putting things into our mind particularly repeatedly will make way into the emotional heart and affect our spirituality, and work towards forming our character.

Many thoughts make up the unwritten history of a single day; and these thoughts have much to do with the formation of character. Our thoughts are to be strictly guarded; for one impure thought makes a deep impression on the soul. An evil thought leaves an evil impress on the mind. If the thoughts are pure and holy, the man is better for having cherished them. By them the spiritual pulse is quickened, and the power for doing good is increased. And as one drop of rain prepares the way for another in moistening the earth, so one good thought prepares the way for another. {FLB 222.2}

Wrong habits of thought, when once accepted, become a despotic power that fastens the mind as in a grasp of steel. {FLB 222.3}

The thoughts are not to be allowed to run riot. They must be restrained, brought into captivity to the obedience of Christ. Let them be placed upon holy things. Then, through the grace of Christ, they will be pure and true. We need a constant sense of the ennobling power of pure thoughts. The only security for any soul is right thinking. {FLB 222.4}

Our minds take the level of the things on which our thoughts dwell, and if we think upon earthly things, we shall fail to take the impress of that which is heavenly. We would be greatly benefited by contemplating the mercy, goodness, and love of God; but we sustain great loss by dwelling upon those things, which are earthly and temporal. {FLB 222.5}

Although there may be a tainted, corrupted atmosphere around us, we need not breathe its miasma, but may live in the pure air of heaven. We may close every door to impure imaginings and unholy thoughts by lifting the soul into the presence of God through sincere prayer. Those whose hearts are open to receive the support and blessing of God will walk in a holier atmosphere than that of earth and will have constant communion with Heaven. {FLB 222.6}

You must give an account to God of your thoughts, of your words, of your time, and of your actions.... {HP 161.2}

The Lord searcheth all hearts, and understandeth all the imaginations of the thoughts: if thou seek him, he will be found of thee; but if thou forsake him, he will cast thee off forever. 1 Chronicles 28:9{HP 161.1}

You can never enter heaven unless you enjoy the communion of God here below, for this is our fitting-up place for heaven. God should be the object of the soul’s highest reverence, love, and fear. This world is the only school in which you can receive a preparation for the higher grade. Those who do not love to retain God in their thoughts in this world, those who consider it irksome to be in subjection to God in this life, will never have enjoyment with Christ in the future life. The very things they choose and love here in self-pleasing are educating their tastes so that heavenly discipline will be a restraint. Let your soul be brought under discipline to God.... {HP 161.3}

He who created man, who paid such a price for his redemption, is greatly dishonored when man chooses a low, earthly level, a life of frivolity and cheapness.... All who are content to turn away from that knowledge which will make them wise unto salvation in this life and the future, who accept of earthly, frivolous things, are feeding their souls upon brackish water when Jesus Christ invites them, “If any man thirst, let him come unto me, and drink” (John 7:37). {HP 161.4}

Let your soul be absorbed in meditating upon the glorious truths contained in the Word of God, and you will have no constant craving for something, which you have not. You will despise cheap, vain thoughts. You will be ever trying to meet the elevated standard of virtue and holiness, which is kept before you in the gospel. You will seek for higher attainments in the divine life. Converse with God through the medium of His Word.... {HP 161.5}

By contemplating the lofty ideal He has placed before you, you will be uplifted into a pure and holy atmosphere, even the presence of God. When you abide here, there goes forth from you a light, which irradiates all who are connected with you. {HP 161.6}


 

Having a Healthy Heart

Caring for a Physical Heart

 

February 24, 2018

Keeping a Physically Healthy Heart:

Whether therefore ye eat, or drink, or whatsoever ye do, do all to the glory of God. 1 Cor. 10:31  

     In order to preserve health, temperance in all things is necessary--temperance in labor, temperance in eating and drinking. Our heavenly Father sent the light of health reform . . . that those who love purity and holiness may know how to use with discretion the good things He has provided for them, and that by exercising temperance in daily life they may be sanctified through the truth.  

     Great care should be taken to form right habits of eating and drinking. The food eaten should be that which will make the best blood. The delicate organs of digestion should be respected. God requires us, by being temperate in all things, to act our part toward keeping ourselves in health . . . . The spiritual experience is greatly affected by the way in which the stomach is treated. Eating and drinking in accordance with the laws of health promote virtuous actions.  

     Principle should rule instead of appetite or fancy. . .  It means much to be true to God. He has claims upon all who are engaged in His service. He desires that mind and body be preserved in the best condition of health, every power and endowment under the divine control, and as vigorous as careful, strictly temperate habits can make them. . . Temperance in eating, drinking, sleeping, and dressing is one of the grand principles of the religious life. Truth brought into the sanctuary of the soul will guide in the treatment of the body.  

     The better you observe the laws of health, the more clearly can you discern temptations, and resist them, and the more clearly can you discern the value of eternal things. May the Lord help you to make the most of your present opportunities and privileges, that you may daily gain new victories, and finally enter the city of God, as those who have overcome by the blood of the Lamb and the word of their testimony.