Actors, writers and musicians use movies, videos, television shows, novels and songs to promote a common message: “Follow your heart!” It sounds beautiful, and it usually works out for the best … in the movies. But think about it, and consider two great reasons why you should never follow your heart.
Some Guides are Notoriously Unreliable
When someone says, “Follow your heart!” it’s like saying, “Let your heart be your guide.” But, our hearts are unreliable guides.
The Lord Jesus painted a word picture about unreliable guides. He said, “…If a blind man guides a blind man, both will fall into a pit.” No offense to the blind, but we all know what Jesus meant: A blind person is a notoriously unreliable guide. A blind guide will most likely end up in a pit, along with those he is attempting to lead.
Our hearts are similar. And we’re not talking about the physical heart — the muscle beating inside our chests. We’re talking about our inner person, the center of our emotions and will. Our hearts are blinded by our passions and cravings. They are blinded by sin, which makes us selfish by default.
This is what Jesus taught: “Out of the heart come evil thoughts, murder, adultery, sexual immorality, theft, false testimony, slander” (Matthew 15:19). Think about it: Murder doesn’t start in the hands. Sexual immorality isn’t the act of bodies only. Slander doesn’t originate in the mouth. These sins begin in the heart. Sin has tainted and confused our hearts so that we want what we want — even if we know it is wrong.
You should not follow your heart because it will lead you astray. It is a notoriously unreliable guide.
One Guide is Perfectly Reliable
Jesus invited people to invite Him to be their life guide. Like a man named Simon. Simon was quite impulsive. He followed his heart and his heart led him to say foolish things and act in foolish ways. “Follow Me,” Jesus said to Simon. Fortunately, Simon followed Jesus and became a great presenter of the message of Jesus throughout the then known world.
Others like Matt and Zac followed their hearts and became greedy. They became so greedy, they were willing to cheat their own people. Jesus said to them, “Follow Me.” They too followed Jesus and became generous men who sacrificed their own riches for the good of others.
Why is Jesus a perfectly reliable guide?
First, because of who He is. Jesus said, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father but through Me.” He said He is the “good shepherd … God’s Son … the bread of life … the light of the world … and the resurrection and the life.” In other words, Jesus claimed to be God Himself, who can guide you to know true, abundant, full and eternal life. Yes, anyone can claim to be all these things, but Jesus backed it up with His actions.
Second, Jesus is a perfectly reliable guide because of what He did. He healed the sick, fed a multitude with a few loaves of bread and fish, restored sight to people born blind, stopped a storm by speaking, “Peace, be still!” and raised the dead to life again. He then predicted His own death and that He would rise again. Then He died and rose again!
Jesus did all these things so that people would know that He was sent from God. Because of that, He did them for thousands of people to witness. Again, anyone can claim to be God, but only one person in history has backed it up with true miracles.
Third, Jesus is a perfectly reliable guide because of what He wants to give you. He came to reveal God to us, to offer forgiveness for your wrongdoings, and to give the gift of God’s Spirit to those who will trust him. God’s Holy Spirit brings comfort and guidance to the followers of Jesus.
Don’t Follow. Lead!
Instead of following your heart, lead your heart. Follow Jesus — the only perfectly reliable guide in history. We can no longer follow Him, like Simon, Matt and Zac, along the paths of Galilee and the streets of Jerusalem, but we can follow Him by first believing in Him for forgiveness of sins and the gift of eternal life. And then we can live the life He calls us to live — with all our heart.