The heart is the lifeline of our ship. It resembles the ship’s motor. If the motor dies, the ship dies. “Keep thy heart with all diligence; for out of it are the issues of life” (Prov. 4:23). Ugly words and good words come out of the heart. The former will cause the helm to steer the wrong course.
We tend to look on the paint job and decorating on the ship. We may think, Let me sail in that ship. What a beauty! Are the mechanics of that ship in good shape? Is it sea worthy? Will it keep out the water? It is nice to have a beautiful ship in which to sail. What good will that do if it sinks or malfunctions?
God looks on the heart—our lifeline. “But the Lord said unto Samuel, “Look not on his countenance, or on the height of his stature; because I have refused him: for the Lord seeth not as man seeth; for man looketh on the outward appearance, but the Lord looketh on the heart” (1 Sam. 16:7).
Does our lifeship keep out the water or do big waves splash into our ship? Circumstances, doubt, pride, upset our vessel. Faith, humility, and peace keep us afloat as we sail on troubled seas. Can we cross the Red Seas or Jordans in our lives?
When our heart does not keep right with God, it causes our lifeship to capsize. God wants to give us a new heart. “A new heart also will I give you, and a new spirit will I put within you: and I will take away the stony heart out of your flesh, and I will give you an heart of flesh” (Eze. 36:26). He gives us soft hearts.
A sailor with a soft heart hungers after the Word of God. She reads it, studies it, memorizes it, and meditates upon it. She becomes a doer, not merely a hearer of the Word. It changes her life.
Others can trust a good Christian woman. “The heart of her husband doth safely trust in her” (Prov. 31:11). She honors her husband and cares for his needs.
As she applies the Word to herself, she grows in knowledge and in understanding. The Holy Spirit in her heart aids the process. She possesses a sound heart because she trusts in the Captain of her ship.
He fills her heart with joy even in the midst of sorrows and troubles. God says, “A merry heart doeth good like a medicine” (Prov. 17:22). A rejoicing heart aids her physical well-being, as well as her spiritual health.
When a sailor possesses a wise heart, others rejoice also. When people see her wisdom, they call her prudent. She speaks wise words from the treasures in her heart. She seeks and gains knowledge of her Creator. She guides her heart in the right way.
On the other hand, a bitter heart ends up steering into the crags and shoals. The wise woman forgives the sailors who offend her and keeps rowing for Christ. This forgiving spirit shields her from the crags of bitterness and anger.
All Scripture is from the King James Bible.
Excerpt from Our Lifeship: Studies in Proverbs for Women by Lynn Wallace, © 2008.
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