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Safeguard Your Heart
Proverbs 4:23 Updated American Standard Version (UASV)
23 Keep your heart with all vigilance,
for from it flow the springs of life.
Keep your heart with all vigilance: The heart (Heb. lēḇ) in the Old Testament seldom has anything to do specifically with emotions. The heart is the “center of the physical, mental, and spiritual life of humans. The heart and the intellect are closely connected, the heart being the seat of intelligence.” The heart is to be kept (Heb. nā·ṣǎr) with all vigilance (Heb. miš·mār). To keep has the sense of safety: to keep, protect, or preserve something safe from injury, harm, or danger. It suggests a relationship with the protector. (Psa. 40:12) Vigilance means to guard or keep careful watch over for protection against possible danger or difficulties. It is constant reminders that keep these things close to the heart. This is why the writers of the Hebrew Old Testament repeated things so often or made the same point but in different ways. Without constant watchfulness, the heart can be caught off guard and lured into wrongdoing. If you keep a careful watch over your mind and your eyes, you will, in essence, be keeping a careful watch over your heart.
 Gerald P. Cowen, “Heart”, in Holman Illustrated Bible Dictionary, ed. Chad Brand, Charles Draper, Archie England et al., 731 (Nashville, TN: Holman Bible Publishers, 2003).
For from it flow the springs of life: From it, namely, the heart, figuratively, the mind, the element of a person that enables them to be aware of the world and their experiences, to think, and to feel; the faculty of consciousness and thought. The centerpiece of it all is the mind. Our moods, behaviors, and body responses result from the way we view things. It is a proven fact that we cannot experience any event in any way, shape, or form unless we have processed it with our mind first. No event can depress us; it is our perception of that event that will depress us. If we are only sad over an event, our thoughts will be rational, but if we are depressed wrathful, or anxious about an event, our thinking will be bent and irrational, distorted and utterly wrong.
It may be difficult for each of us to wrap our mind around it, but we are superb at telling ourselves outright lies and half-truths, repeatedly throughout each day. In fact, some of us are so good at it that it has become our reality and led to annoyance, stress, irritation, anger, even depression, and anxiety. In many ways, our lives are somehow defined by the thoughts stored in and running through the heart or mind. How we think is how we feel.