Inside-out living is maintaining a healthy spiritual heart, for it is your spiritual heart that will guide your life. Therefore, we need to be diligent in protecting it and developing it. Consider the truth from Proverbs about spiritual life:
Proverbs 4:23 (NLT) – Guard your heart above all else, for it determines the course of your life.
So How Do We Guard Our Heart?
Guarding our heart is all about doing the hard INSIDE work of life. It takes time. Guarding our heart requires digging around to see what is healthy and unhealthy in our life. Healthy living requires feedback from faithful/godly friends. Guarding our hearts requires us to be humble and teachable to the grace and truth that God brings our way. Let’s look at each of these briefly today to see how we can start living life from the INSIDE out.
Every day we are either in a period of “Good Time” or “Bad Time.” Good time is when your life produces healthy fruit in your relationships and skillset. Bad time is when your life is not producing fruit in your relationships or skill set, or the fruit you produce is rotten. Everyone goes through periods when they are not producing fruit, or the fruit they are producing is rotten.
In my first few years of pastoral ministry, I developed some bad habits (rotten fruit); I was in a period of bad time. I needed an outside influence to come into my life and reveal truth and grace to me. It was a hard season to go through, but I needed it. The hard season and the truth (with grace) allowed me to move into a season of “good time” or a season of ministry where I started producing healthy fruit in ministry.
GRACE AND TRUTH
The human heart does not produce grace or truth on its own. We have to go outside of ourselves to get those two ingredients to grow. We are closed systems needing outside influence to grow to new places. I cannot “hug myself” to feel better when I am sad or lonely. When I am stuck in a rut spiritually or relationally, I cannot “imagine” new truths to get me out of the rut. I have to go outside myself to get the grace and truth I need to grow past the present problems in my life.
INSIDE Out living requires that I allow others into my life to see the “real me” so that they can give me the truth, grace, and ACCEPTANCE I need to grow. The struggle is that we fear that when we allow others into our lives to see the real me, they will not accept us. This is a HUGE issue for life growth. It requires us to be humble and teachable and to take a step of faith. To take a risk. But listen, it is in relationships that we truly or finally get healthy. It is in a relationship where we can have REAL feedback on our life that helps us to become fruitful. I need relationships, and you do too!
Inside Out Living
The logo for my business is based on the truth from Proverbs 4:23 and the fig tree parable in Luke 13. The logo is a tree with four different colors of growth. Each color represents an area of our life that we need to work on developing:
- Orange – Relational Health
- Green – Spiritual Health
- Blue – Mental Health
- Teal – Physical Health
As we develop these four areas of our life, we will become fruitful and skillful at dealing with the stress in our life. We will be guarding our hearts!
Want more insight?
Let’s start a coaching engagement (in the office, over the phone, or in a Zoom Conference Room). I can help you cut through the clutter of life to get unstuck, gain success, and reach your goals.
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What are you doing to gain ownership of your life? Leave a comment below. I’d love to hear what is working for you.