James 1:14-15 “Each one is tempted when, by his own evil desire, he is dragged away and enticed. Then, after desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full-grown, gives birth to death.”
In my words: “A good Christian man that follows the Lord avoids what is not good and not of the Lord (evil) protecting what is valuable to him (relationship with the Lord… what matters the most… your desire to serve the Lord and to please him in all ways…the way you live your life) keeping away from those impure, unholy, ungodly, unrighteous things will assure him protection and will not be effected by those things.
Guard Your WAY
If you guard your WAY (relationship with the Lord… what matters the most… your desire to serve the Lord and to please him in all ways…the way you live your life) your LIFE will automatically be guarded. How do you guard your WAY? To guard your WAY is to make a choice to closely monitor EVERYTHING that you “intake” or “digest” on a daily basis (what you allow to fill your heart).
Evil Is Like Rotten Food
For an example, if you are trying to decide if you should watch a movie that contains scenes that are ungodly and impure and you are wondering…will this really hurt me? Is it really that big of a deal? Surly just this one movie won’t hurt me? If you can imagine evil (what is not good and not of the Lord) being like food…every choice you make you can think…do I really want to take a bite into this hamburger that looks 7 days old and is turning green and fuzzy??? Ummm…NO is the answer for me!!! That is exactly what evil is!!! Nasty, disgusting, rotting, mess that no one needs inside of them!!! If you don’t look at it this way then you are NOT looking at it as it is. Maybe taking a second to picture what EVIL looks like then maybe you will make a better choice to protect what is valuable to you. To make the choice to GUARD your WAY is by saying “NO I don’t want any part of that which is not good and not of the Lord”. By doing that you are taking a bite of a freshly baked apple pie which is GOOD not BAD. I don’t know about you but I would much rather take a bite of a freshly baked apple pie that melts in your mouth and throws you into a 2 hour nap afterwards than eating a stinky old green fuzzy hamburger!!! Everything that we do will affect us in a good way or a bad way. You may not see the evidence immediately but it is there and will eventually you will see the effects. We HAVE GOT TO PROTECT what is important to us like we are caring around inside of us a precious diamond that is worth all the money in the world and MORE!!! Because that is EXACTLY what we are caring inside of us…the most important thing that could ever exist… the Holy Spirit. We must protect it. In every situation each and every day that we are faced with, we have to make a choice.
Your Life Becomes Guarded
If you guard your WAY then how does that automatically guard your LIFE? If we were to choose not to “guard” or “protect” our WAY then we will be choosing to eat that stinky old green fuzzy hamburger. Weather or not we guard our WAY determines how it will effect our LIFE. Look at it this way…imagine you went a whole day of eating stinky old green fuzzy hamburgers, molded rotting fruit, nasty black old molded bread and disgusting spoiled chunky milk. By the end of the day you would have chosen so much of impure, unholy, ungodly, unrighteous things that you are filled up with them. The effects of choosing evil and not guarding against it will eventually over time get to the point of consuming you and overtaking what you use to be and before you know it you don’t even know who you are anymore and how you got there. So it all starts with guarding your WAY and that will guard your LIFE!!! Everyday choose to reject EVIL and what is valuable to you (his relationship with the Lord, what matters the most to him and life will be protected) will be protected and not affected.
Mark 7:21-22 (NIV) “For from within, out of men's hearts, come evil thoughts, sexual immorality, theft, murder, adultery, greed, malice, deceit, lewdness, envy, slander, arrogance and folly.”
Your Eyes, Ears & Heart
We must guard our WAY by guarding our eyes, ears and heart. If we live to serve the Lord and truly desire to please him we should want to be selective in what we involve ourselves in on a daily basis. What our ears hear and our eyes see goes straight into our heart. You may not think listening in on a gossip conversation won’t hurt you, but it does more damage than you realize. If you are letting that gossip enter into your heart it will come out into words and actions eventually. You are what you eat!!! That is a very true statement. You are what you consume (spiritually). The more and more you read the scriptures, dwell on them and study them the closer you become to the Lord. The closer you become to the Lord the more you begin to take on his characteristics and develop a desire for the things he desires. The more you take on his characteristics and develop a desire for the things he desires you begin to act on it. Those are the type of things that will come out of you…GOOD and Godly things. But if you choose to fill your heart with the things that are not of the Lord then that is what will come out of your heart.
1 Thessalonians 5:22 “Avoid every kind of evil.”
What Happens - The Process
What your ears hear and what your eyes see will go into your heart. What goes into your heart is what you will dwell on. What you dwell on will come out into actions and words. Picture it like this…if you plant a seed in the ground it begins to grow and develop. Soon it will burst out of the soil into a real live plant.
Heart Is Your Center Core
Think of it this way…look at your heart like an engine in a car, it’s the center core. If you put sugar in your gas tank instead of gasoline it could cause some major damage and in most instances, cause the car to stall and require major repairs. If you continue to put the sugar in the gas tank then eventually the car will quite working. See?? Sugar wasn’t made for cars…just like that nasty, disgusting, rotting, mess (EVIL) wasn’t made to pollute our hearts. Let’s say you involve yourself in a conversation that is full of gossip and tearing others completely apart with words. You have just eaten that stinky old green fuzzy hamburger. Avoiding that conversation is exactly what guarding your WAY means…to choose to not be apart of that conversation will eliminate filling your heart with things that are not of the Lord. Therefore, guarding your WAY (your desire to serve the Lord and to please him in all ways, the way you live your life).
Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things (Philippians 4:8).