Guard Your Heart

Growing up, my house was the neighborhood hub for summer fun. Friends came to play basketball—every day but Sunday—and lined up afterwards for my mom’s homemade popsicles. The front drive was always abuzz with activity.

I think my parents liked it this way, because they knew where my brothers and I were, and could also keep a watchful eye on everyone. They were teachers (off in the summer) and almost everyone in our little town knew them.

Occasionally, after the last pick-up game, when everyone had gone home, my dad would warn me about someone who’d been there that day. “Son, I heard the Perkins kid using the F-word and saw him throwing elbows under the rim. That’s not the kind of friend or player you want to be.”

I actually thought *Jimmy Perkins was kinda cool. But even as a teenager, I respected my father’s advice; he was a good judge of character. Sure enough, later that fall Jimmy got kicked off the team and suspended from school for punching our basketball coach in the face!

Awhile later, I came across the apostle Paul’s warning to the Galatians: “A little yeast works through the whole bunch of dough,” (Gal. 5:9) and I realized what my father had done: he protected me by pointing out someone who was a bad influence.

There’s actually quite a bit in the Bible about how much damage a little leaven can do. Paul used the analogy to clue the Galatians in to the dangers of legalism, but said almost the same words to caution the Corinthians about tolerating a totally different situation. (1 Cor. 5:6-7) Jesus Himself weighed in on the issue. He told his disciples to, “guard against the yeast of the Pharisees and Sadducees,” who added their own pious rules to God’s law (Matt. 16:6-12).

The point is, we need to examine ourselves to see whether we are in the faith (2 Cor. 13:5). One step daily with God in the right direction can transform your life. However, walking backwards has the opposite effect.

I like how fellow blogger Chris Hendrix puts it in his post Defeating Hidden Sins:

“Guarding my heart became something I did rather than just something I read about in the Bible. If every sin was hiding in my heart, waiting for the right moment and circumstances to align, I needed to be more cautious.”

Chris Hendrix

AMEN! Guarding your heart is something you DO.

Above all else, guard your heart, for it is the wellspring of life

Prov. 4:23

To read about my own personal misjudgment with the proverbial yeast, please see the post, Just a Little Off Course.

*not his real name.

Photo by Spencer Lind on






18 responses to “Guard Your Heart”

  1. davidsdailydose Avatar

    Thank you, brother Alan. Yes, may we always be on guard against the wrong kind of leaven. Blessings.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Alan Kearns Avatar

    A wise post brother. How we need to be ever watchful in our walk with God against leaven sneaking into our mixing bowl. God bless you on this Lord’s Day.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. davidsdailydose Avatar

    Thank you, Mandy. There’s a verse somewhere in Proverbs that says, “The wise in heart are called discerning, and pleasant words promote instruction.” That was my father in a nutshell. Blessings!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Blue Collar Theologian Avatar

    Beautiful picture! Wise people seek wise people. So thankful for your dad’s wisdom and for you passing it along!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. davidsdailydose Avatar

    So true, Jeff. And it only takes a little leaven to effect us all. Thanks for sharing!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Jeffrey H. King Avatar

    I remember a “Jimmy Perkins” in my Lutheran grade school. He came in as a foster kid, but he didn’t last long. Violent play in basketball, smoking outside of the building, language. Fortunately, in that Christian environment his “leaven” didn’t take hold. Unfortunately, the same cannot be said for the country, so bad leaven spreads all too easily!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. davidsdailydose Avatar

    You’re welcome, Tina. Thank you for reading and commenting! Blessings.


  8. Tina Avatar

    Great post David. Sound and wise advice. Thanks for passing it on. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  9. God Still Speaks Avatar

    Homemade popscicles and good advice. Life doesn’t get much better!

    Liked by 1 person

  10. davidsdailydose Avatar

    Agreed. As Shakespeare famously said, “Love all. Trust a few.” Of course, nobody’s perfect, but integrity (in the main) is paramount.


  11. Don't Lose Hope Avatar

    I am so grateful to those who have protected me from destructive influences. A lot of the time we are unaware of how powerfully we are being influenced by friends, family, and the media. I have learned to be careful in those I select as close friends … and I have also tried to exert some influence over the kind of people my kids spent time with. As I get older I see how important this has been.

    Liked by 1 person

  12. davidsdailydose Avatar

    Yes, my father was a good man. Integrity was something he valued highly. “Son, you are only as good as your word,” was one of his favorite phrases. Thanks, Barb! 🙏❤️

    Liked by 1 person

  13. My Life in Our Father's World Avatar

    A wise man, your father. It seems you learned much from him.

    Liked by 1 person

  14. davidsdailydose Avatar

    Thank you, Betty. Like you said, plenty of what goes on in the world doesn’t promote peace. At least not the long lasting kind. I hope you and Dan enjoy your day as well! I appreciate your comments.

    Liked by 1 person

  15. davidsdailydose Avatar

    Agreed, Gary. A soldier once told me, “You never hear the shot that gets you.” All the more reason to stay vigilant. Blessings.

    Liked by 1 person

  16. Betty Avatar

    Very good post, David. I have to guard my mind,too, as there are many rationalizations in this world for activities which don’t lead to peace. Enjoy your day!

    Liked by 1 person

  17. Gary Fultz Avatar

    It’s quite easy to say to one’s self “I’ll be vigilant tomorrow”
    I know about this a little too well.

    Liked by 2 people

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