He just has to break your heart

Esther Tan // June 11, 2019, 9:26 pm

broken heart

“He just has to break your heart.”

This phrase stuck with me after a long conversation with a very dear friend.

Recently, I’ve faced some discouragement and disappointment that has been hard to resolve within myself. It made me uncomfortable and I had so many questions. Thankfully, God didn’t leave me confused and down.

It was during this period that I was reminded of a well-known Bible verse: “Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it.” (Proverbs 4:23)

But what is this “heart” that the verse talks about? Why is it important to guard it? How does one even “guard” it?

A quick Google search gave me this interesting piece of information: In the Old Testament, the word “heart” is used more than 800 times, but more than 200 times it deals with the thought life, the emotions, the “wellsprings” of life – things that motivate and mould us. The Bible calls all these “the heart”.

Have you lost heart?

The heart is what we think and feel, which eventually shape our attitudes. Our attitudes are the sum total of our thoughts. Our attitudes lead to our actions.

I realised that as I continued dwelling on my negative thoughts and feelings, my attitude towards the particular issue grew negative. And I knew now that if I didn’t guard against or do something to put a stop to these thoughts and feelings, I would eventually stop believing the good in the issue at hand – stop hoping – and ultimately stop working or putting effort into it.

He who controls the heart, wins the soul.

Putting this in the context of relationships, I might end a friendship. If it were a marriage, I might give up trying and perhaps get a divorce. If this were in terms of church ministry, I might stop serving. And if my negative thoughts and feelings concerned my calling and God’s purposes for my life, I might turn away and never fulfil any of it.

The devil knows how issues of the heart can cripple and even destroy a person. He doesn’t even have to create real situations or put you in actual crises. He only needs to start by breaking your heart. He is very focussed on the battle of the heart. He who controls the heart, wins the soul.

Discouragement: The devil’s most effective weapon

So what now? Back to Proverbs 4:23 – guard your heart!

But how do I guard it? I cried out to God in prayer. I didn’t want to lose His vision, passion and calling. I surely didn’t want to lose the relationship with my Father.

“Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.” (Romans 12:2)

Here’s the secret: If God is the one living and reigning inside my heart, I will be able to see right, think right, feel right and do right. He will guard my heart, renew my thoughts, and guide my emotions and my actions.

Because contrary to popular belief, our minds cannot multitask. You cannot be thinking about two things as the same time. Which means that if you are thinking right, you cannot be thinking wrong. So let God be the one who gives you the first thought about any situation.

Fill your heart full with God and His truth. Don’t let devil even start seeding a hairline crack.

“Put on the full armour of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes … Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place … In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.” (Ephesians 6:11-17)

This article was first published on Esther’s Facebook note and is republished with permission.


  1. Recall a period of discouragement and/or disappointment. What was it like?
  2. How did you process the issues of your heart?
  3. What are some practical handles to guarding your heart?
  4. How do we move past negative thoughts and feelings?