I Like Pockets

I need pockets. Summer brings a challenge. Polo shirts may or may not have pockets, but putting a pen in a polo shirt pocket is the ultimate picture of wrong. Where do I carry my phone, pen, keys, dollar bills, handkerchief, notes and receipts? Cargo pants seem to be a good choice. Cargo pants with a filing system.

Guard your heart.

I know preachers have warned us that because “the heart is desperately wicked,” we must guard it—like stationing a Marine to keep the heart from escaping and going on a crime spree. In contrast, several of my favorite writers say the warning is not to keep the heart under control, but to keep destructive elements from damaging our hearts—not from keeping the heart in, but to keep potential harm out.

We must guard our hearts from being overtaken by all the other things in our lives.

You’ve got to fight for your heart.

That is the dominant phrase of my week. All those “pockets” will take over. Keeping your life enriched and potent means to fight for minutes or moments or hours to listen, think, read, interact or tune it—whatever fills your soul. The alternative is to live with an empty soul, which in practical terms is called stress, depression, emptiness.

Soul Tending: self-aware of what makes you hopeful and being motivated and fueled by love, joy and peace. Think of those three as essential commodities. How do they manifest in you?

I filled holes in our lawn this spring with extra potent soil. I planted Viagra-driven grass seed and covered it with a mesh to keep the soil from eroding and to encourage the grass to germinate. That is the image that has dominated my thinking and the words have been: What are you doing today that will germinate and enrich?  Everything else in all those pockets of your life will be stimulated or thwarted by what is happening in your “heart.”

All those pockets are filled with stuff that needs to be done and they are militant. They will steal your lunch. They are not to be neglected or abandoned, just kept in their proper place. One of the rules is—no stealing or replacing my Soul Tending time.

Fighting for my heart.

©2015 D. Dean Benton   http://www.bentonministries.com

Writer, Wonderer, Meanderer—- follow me on Twitter–@DeanBenton

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2 thoughts on “I Like Pockets

  1. The preachers who speak of the heart as desperately wicked need to distinguish between people in their “natural” state and those who have had all things made new. We’re a new creation, and all things have been made new. We are the righteousness of God in Christ, no longer the poor wretch, lowly worm. One preacher made a succinct statement that took some pondering before I got it … we are becoming what we became. We are working out in practical living that good thing that God has done in us.

    I realize I am not addressing the point of your message, which I do agree with, and take as a good reminder.

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