Joe had a photographic memory. He could remember the serial numbers on coal cars as the train passed by. Jack understood mining and miners like no one else. Joe would help when help was needed, even at a great inconvenience to himself. Joe loved his dog, Wolf. Joe loved stamp collecting. I liked Joe.
And Joe was a drunk. Joe lost his job and wife. Joe did not guard his heart and the direction of his life changed forever.
Guard your heart above all else,
for it determines the course of your life.
Proverbs 4:23 NLT
Most of us think we are strong enough to face anything. “It won’t hurt (affect) me!” We go into soul-crushing debt. We are “at work” 24/7. We drink too much with friends in order to medicate the stress from overwork. We let others do all the work as we become spectators of life. We put our families through daily schedules harder that NFL two-a-day’s in the August heat and humidity. We find like-minded people in order to judge others unlike us. We skip church for "important things" on a regular basis. We are less than honest. We refuse to work things out – my way or the highway. We will not share. Sadly, I see myself here. Do you see you?
Today, guard your heart by evaluating the company you keep, human and otherwise. Examine what comes out of your heart. Don’t let “in” that which will hurt the soul. I pray for you the life God wants for you. I pray you follow God’s lead.
(Yes, Joe is real. I change his name, however.)