Follow your heart?

We live in a culture that frequently encourages you to “follow your heart.”  As I was studying the story of Rehoboam in 2 Chronicles, I was reminded how important it is that we not blindly “follow our hearts.”  It is written of Rehoboam:

He did evil because he had not set his heart on seeking the LORD. 2  Chronicles 12:14

Rehoboam may have followed his heart, but his heart was not properly set.  Like a malfunctioning compass, it led him far from the path of righteousness. 

The Hebrew word for “set” here, means to apply, appoint, assign, charge, commit, direct,etc.  We must consciously choose to set our hearts on Him:

I have chosen the way of truth;
       I have set my heart on your laws.

I hold fast to your statutes, O LORD;
       do not let me be put to shame.

I run in the path of your commands,
       for you have set my heart free.
 

Psalm 119: 30-32

We must diligently hide His word in our hearts:

I have hidden your word in my heart that I might not sin against you.   Psalm 119:11

and wholeheartedly seek His kingdom and His righteousness:

But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.  Matthew 6:33

 Then, and only then, is the compass of the heart properly calibrated.

It is also worth noting that prior to Rehoboam’s failing to “set his heart,”  it was said of him, the priests, and Levites:

“They strengthened the kingdom of Judah and supported Rehoboam son of Solomon three years, walking in the ways of David and Solomon during this time.”  2 Chronicles 11:17

He walked faithfully for three years, and when he “became strong” he abandoned the law of the Lord:

“After Rehoboam’s position as king was established and he had become strong, he and all Israel  with him abandoned the law of the LORD.” 2 Chronicles 12:1

Therefore, we must test our hearts daily, ensuring they are properly calibrated and  fully set on Him.  Then we may joyously proclaim with David:

Your statutes are my heritage forever;
       they are the joy of my heart.

My heart is set on keeping your decrees
       to the very end.

Psalm 119: 111-112

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