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Christian Life

Does the Bible Say to “Follow Your Heart”?

—by Ida Ploug Pahus

If you’re anything like me, you have been advised or have heard “follow your heart” or “do what makes you happy” a couple of times. This is the creed of the millennial generation, the creed that promises you the route to happiness. But are we really supposed to follow our hearts?

Think about it for a moment. What does your heart tell you? If your heart is just a little like mine, it has probably told you things and wished for things you don’t even want to say out loud. My heart is so often driven by my desires and feelings. It wants to serve me and do what’s best for me. It doesn’t tell me the truth; it tells me what I want to hear. It sometimes craves revenge. Sometimes it wants to hurt someone; other times it wants to gossip…and on it goes. It wants to serve people if it can get a reward, some applause or get some people to like me. To sum it up: It can be pretty selfish.

The statement “follow your heart” is nowhere to be found in the Bible. Jeremiah 17:9 says: “The heart is deceitful above all things and beyond cure. Who can understand it?” And even Jesus says about the condition of our hearts: “But the things that come out of a person’s mouth come from the heart, and these defile them. For out of the heart come evil thoughts—murder, adultery, sexual immorality, theft, false testimony, slander.” (Matthew 15:18-19) This is definitely not how we would like to be characterized as Christians.

This leads to the fact that our hearts were never meant to lead us or constantly be followed. No, our hearts are meant to be led. The condition of the human heart is what separates us from God because of our sin—that’s why our hearts should not be led by us, but instead led by God and He will save us from ourselves (Hebrews 7:25) and He will be the delight of our hearts.  

So don’t follow your heart. Follow Jesus. Don’t listen to your heart; listen to Jesus and let Him be your shepherd. Don’t believe in your heart, but lead your heart to believe in Jesus. I’m by no means telling you to ignore how you’re feeling all the time, but to note what your heart is telling you and then take it to Jesus and make your heart be aligned with His.


Image: Lightstock | Brown Bag Photography


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  1. Project Inspired

    Posted by MerrillH on September 22, 2018 at 00:26

    I love this and it is so true! Every new Disney movie tells us to “Follow our heart!” I wish I had written this!