The Lord searches all hearts, and understands every intent of the thoughts.
For the Word of God is living and active and sharper than any two-edged sword, and piercing as far as the division of soul and spirit, of both joints and marrow, and able to judge the thoughts and intentions of the heart.
When things don't go the way you imagined,
When you're caught in sketchy circumstances,
When you seem to be completely guilty...
What you meant to do may not sway the cops.
Your own family may turn a deaf ear. But your intentions are crucial to God.
Your heart's motives are so vital to Him that He created cities of refuge to spare assailants from retribution when they caused harm unintentionally.* On the other hand, God's Righteous Right Hand, He considers your evil intentions to be equal in guilt to the misdeed.**
Whether you like it or whether you don't, by your heart's intentions, you will be judged.
Actors, models and talent for Christ: Because God knows your every thought, because thoughts can wander bad places, capture stray thoughts before they take hold. How?
Through your obedience to Christ and studying His Word faithfully, cast off thoughts that don't agree with Him.***
When you repeat the Words of your Lord, their power overwhelms the devil. Petty, vicious or destructive thoughts (which left unchecked become intentions), can't begin to stand against Jesus. Both they and their dirty-rotten source must flee from the presence of the Lord.****
You may be tired after the fight, but your mind, heart and mouth will be clean.
## Proverbs For Performers: Your Intentions Count (Part 49)
* Short article: What were the cities of refuge in the Old Testament? http://www.gotquestions.org/cities-of-refuge.html
** See Matthew 5:21-22, 27-28: https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=mat+5%3A21-22%2C+27-28&version=NKJV
*** 'The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds. We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ' (2 Corinthians 10:4-5).
**** Jesus, the Man, beat back Satan with the power of God's Word: https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=luke+4%3A1-13&version=NKJV
NOTE: This is a republished edit of a 2016 devotion series, 'Proverbs For Performers.' You may see notes to 'Actors, Models & Talent for Christ.' If you think you're not in show business, think again. Every disciple in every field performs for Christ. Shakespeare said, 'All the world's a stage and all its men and women merely players.' Mostly true. But you're not 'merely players.' You are messengers and ambassadors for the King of kings.
P.S. To read the other devotions in this series, please see the Proverbs For Performers series.