Thursday thoughts: Protect your heart, your mind and your eyes


Last week was spring break for my grandchildren. When they returned to school Monday they learned there was a solar eclipse and they would get to participate in watching the eclipse. The schools my granddaughters attend passed out glasses to everyone so they could all be outside and view the eclipse.

My youngest granddaughter, Lottie, asked if they gave us glasses at work to which I replied no. Her response was “Wow, Mimzy you don’t get spring break or glasses. That stinks.” I had to laugh because evidently spring break and glasses were very important to her. She informed me many times that you had to have these special glasses because they were the only ones that would protect your eyes. She proceeded to tell me that if you didn’t have the special glasses you could burn your eyes and they would never be the same again.

She assured me your eyesight would be gone if you didn’t use the glasses. I’m pretty sure the teachers stressed wearing the glasses because they wanted to keep the children safe. Needless to say, I think she might have been more impressed with the glasses than the eclipse, but I do know she heard the part about guarding your eyes with the special glasses.

I was thinking about that protection on my way to work this morning and things we as believers have to protect and guard against. In Proverbs 4:23 the Bible says “Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it.” Just like the special glasses guarded your eyes from harm during the eclipse, we have to guard our hearts. To be able to do this we have to know His Word.

Scripture is our primary defense in guarding our hearts. We must process our emotions, our thoughts, and our responses through what God’s Word says. If you don’t know God’s Word, it’s hard to guard your heart. We have to be aware of and recognize that our hearts have a huge impact on our choices, emotions, and decisions. We need God’s Word in our hearts to be able to handle what we face on a daily basis. This is the only way that our responses will be filtered with His love and wisdom and for us to keep our hearts healthy. We must guard our hearts by filling them with the Word of God.

Another thing we have to guard is our mind. I don’t know about you, but I can be my own worst enemy, especially when there is a trial or a test in my life. I can easily let my mind lead me to think of “worst case scenarios.” This can allow fear and doubt to enter my mind when I am not diligent in guarding it. In Isaiah 26:3 the Bible says “You will keep in perfect peace those whose minds are steadfast, because they trust in you.” If you look up the definition of steadfast you will see that it means to be fixed or firm in a direction or purpose. To me, this just says I have to fix my mind on God and His purposes. I have to look to Him for my direction. I know for a fact that sometimes you have to fix your mind on God and His purposes multiple times a day. Trusting Him is the only way to block out the fear and doubt in my mind. We must guard our minds by trusting God for His peace.

We also have to guard and protect our eyes even when there is not an eclipse. In Hebrews 12 at the end of verse 1 and the beginning of verse 2 the Bible says “Let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfector of faith.” If you think about it, if you ran a race always looking back you would constantly be distracted. If I look back on things in my life I tend to remember and focus on situations where I have regret. You or I cannot change the past. We might wish for days in our past when life might have been easier, troubles were simpler, or maybe even less frantic and busy. We might wish we could have handled a situation differently, controlled our emotions better, or just showed love and grace versus irritation and frustration.

But the truth is we cannot go back and make those days happen or correct our mistakes. We can’t go back and parent over, erase words or actions, or change how we handled a difficult time. We must learn from our mistakes and press on, asking and knowing there is forgiveness. It’s not healthy or productive to live in the past. Our gaze needs to be on Jesus as we press forward. He must be our focal point. We must guard our eyes by fixing them on Jesus who will be waiting for us at the finish line of our race.

I’ve thought a lot about guarding my heart, my mind, and my eyes this week. I even thought about the fact that I am the legal guardian of our daughter with special needs. As her guardian, I have the responsibility to watch over her and protect her from harm as I make the best decisions for her. I want to do this not only because she is my daughter whom I love, but legally I promised to protect her and look after her welfare. She is my child and I love her dearly. I want the best for her.

I have to believe that is how God feels about us. We are his children, He loves us and wants the best for us. Our responsibility is to guard our hearts with His Word, guard our minds by focusing on His direction and purposes, and guard our eyes by fixing them on Jesus.

Right now I can think of friends who are dealing with really tough situations. Maybe you are dealing with something hard such as a sickness, a financial burden, heartache from a family member, grief, or maybe it’s just your life is really tough right now. Let me encourage you and at the same time remind myself.

You have to use your eyes to read the Word of God to guard your heart. You have to fix your eyes on God to keep a clear mind so you can make sure you are following the right path. You have to focus your eyes forward as you run this race called life. You have to open your eyes to see the finish line where Jesus will be waiting when your race is completed.

I don’t think we need special glasses for our eyes. I think we need eyes of faith to protect our eyes. 2 Corinthians 4:18 says “So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.”

How are you protecting your heart, your mind, and your eyes? I pray it’s with the Word of God, His peace, His purpose, His direction, and His love as you race toward the finish line into His arms.


Jill Johnson, a staff member at the Georgia Baptist Mission Board, finds spiritual applications in her everyday experiences as a wife, mother, grandmother and Georgian. She is available to speak to your church's women's gatherings. Reach her at