What Overflows from Your Heart?
I recently finished reading the book “Thinking for a Change” by John Maxwell. If you have a chance, I highly recommend it. It walks through 11 different forms of thinking that people seem to ignore, and encourages everyone to think in order to inspire the change they want to see in their life.
What really stood out in the book, however, wasn’t the thinking. It wasn’t the forms of thinking, how you can get your life together, how you can promote your business, or how you can grow as a person. Those were all great concepts that I’m working into my life. What really stood out was his recollection of a conversation with a friend.
Fill Your Mind with Good Stuff
During John’s conversation, the friend reminded him of something he said more than 20 years prior.
“You told me your goal was to fill your mind with so much good stuff, that by the time you’re fifty-five, it just flows out of you when you speak.”
We can safely say that John Maxwell is regarding as one of the leading experts on leadership, thinking, and personal development. But that didn’t come about by accident. It was an intentional decision to fill his mind, and heart, with so much good stuff, that it all just overflows naturally.
What are you filling your mind with? As we were told when we were kids: garbage in; garbage out.
Guard Your Heart
The Bible tells us, over and over, that we need to guard our hearts. We need to watch what we put into our minds. We need to think on good things.
“Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it.” Proverbs 4:23 NIV
“A good man brings good things out of the good stored up in his heart, and an evil man brings evil things out of the evil stored up in his heart. For the mouth speaks what the heart is full of.” Luke 6:45 NIV
“But the things that come out of a person’s mouth come from the heart…” Matthew 15:18 NIV
We are warned to guard our hearts, and we are told that if you’re good at heart, then good will flow out. But if you’re malicious, conniving, vindictive, scheming, or evil at heart, then out of your mouth will come hatred, gossip, anger, criticism, and words of death.
Fortunately, we also have instruction on how we can focus on the good things. How we can grow our minds and hearts so that they are so full of love, peace, and the good stuff that there will be no room for the hatred and the anger.
“Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable – if anything is excellent or praiseworthy – think about such things.” Philippians 4:8 NIV
When we focus on the good, we can’t focus on the bad.
Fill Your Mind and Heart
Whatever you put into your mind and heart, that will come out eventually. As it fills up, it will overflow.
When you’re 55 years old, do you want people to know you as the irritable old man? The cranky lady that has nothing good to say? The angry couple that everyone avoids (which only reinforces their belief that people suck)? Or do you want to be known as the fun old man that is full of encouragement? The lady that everyone quiets down and listens to because she is full of wisdom? The couple that always smiles, and loves the life they are given?
What you put in now is going to affect who you are then.