My doctor always listens to my heart. He also looks at the lab results to see if my cholesterol is within certain limits. He wants to make certain I don’t drink excessively or smoke. Why? Because he understands the vital importance of the heart. The Proverbs also saw the crucial implications of our hearts in the way our lives will be ordered.

“My son, if you receive my words and treasure up my commandments with you, making your ear attentive to wisdom and inclining your heart to understanding; yes, if you call out for insight and raise your voice for understanding, if you seek it like silver and search for it as for hidden treasures, then you will understand the fear of the Lord and find the knowledge of God.”Proverbs 2:1-5 (ESV)

Jesus also examined man’s heart and knew what it was like (John 2:24) and knew it was vital for the best choices. In Matthew 6:21, regarding the storing up of treasures he said, “For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.” He said there are only two places to store up treasure. One is on earth. That is temporary and dangerous. The other is in heaven where it lasts and cannot be lost. The key is to put your treasure some place where your heart will be led.

That can best be accomplished by wise choices each day. And wisdom requires energetic work. The instruction in Proverbs is an ear, heart, voice and eye focus. My ear must be attentive. Am I listening? The heart must be inclined to gain understanding. My voice must cry out to God to get insight and understanding by prayer. My eyes must search for what is not easily seen. This is hard work. But notice the results: I will “understand the fear of the Lord and find the knowledge of God.”

Want good heart exercise? I suggest the best way to get this type of exercise is to memorize scripture. Yes, I know that is hard work, but if you get your heart engaged to understand and know God, then you want to read what He has written for your benefit.