All sorts of awful things can seem to issue from your heart — anger, lust, fear, petty jealousies. If you think it’s you, a reflection of what’s really going on in your heart, it will disable you. It could stop your journey dead in its tracks. What you’ve encountered is either the voice of your flesh or an attempt of the Enemy to distress you by throwing all sorts of thoughts your way and blaming you for it. You must proceed on this assumption: your heart is good. If it seems that some foul thing is at work there, say to yourself, Well then — this is not my heart. My heart is good. I reject this. Remember Paul in Romans 7? This is not me. This is not me. And carry on in your journey. Over time you’ll grow familiar with the movements of your heart, and who is trying to influence you there.
We do the same with any counsel or word that presents itself as being from God, but contradicts what he has said to us in his written Word. We walk with wisdom and revelation. When I hear something that seems really unwise, I test it again and again before I launch out. The flesh will try to use your “freedom” to get you to do things you shouldn’t do. And now that the Enemy knows you are trying to walk with God and tune in to your heart, he’ll play the ventriloquist and try to deceive you there. Any “word” or suggestion that brings discouragement, condemnation, accusation — that is not from God. Neither is confusion, nor any counsel that would lead you to disobey what you do know. Reject it all, and carry on in your journey. Yes, of course, God needs to convict us of sin, warn us of wrong movements in the soul — but the voice of God is never condemning (Rom. 8:1), never harsh or accusing. His conviction brings a desire for repentance; Satan’s accusation kills our hearts (2 Corinthians 7:10).
And that’s the memo.
By John Eldredge from Waking the Dead