JFK: Garbage In, Garbage Out

Discipleship / Spiritual Formation //

I am a really big believer in the idea of “garbage in, garbage out.” This means that whatever you put into your brain or your heart is what will come out of it. Turns out that Jesus also believed this. How do I know? Well, because He said so:

“The good man brings good things out of the good stored in his heart, and the evil man brings evil things out of the evil stored in his heart. For out of the overflow of his heart his mouth speaks” 
Luke 6:45

That’s great! What does it mean?

Well, it means that the things we store in our mind and heart will be the kinds of things that we say and do. If I put garbage in my mind or heart, then garbage is what will come out. If you want good things to come out, then you must put good things in. In other words, it matters what you watch. It matters what you read. It matters what video games you play.

So what?

Most of us want to be good people. In fact even people who do bad things will often talk about how they are good people. If you want to do good things then you have to make sure not to store bad things in your heart.

How do bad things get into my heart?

I remember a popular TV show when my son, Trey, was small. It was a fun show, but the kids were very disrespectful to their mother. After watching this show for a while Trey started saying things to me and his mother that were very disrespectful. You see by watching this show Trey put these bad things in his heart. Then, because these bad things were there, they began to come out. The same is true for you. Here are some examples of ways that bad things can get into your heart:

  • TV Shows: Remember the story I told you about Trey. If you are watching a T: V show were people are behaving badly, then you need to find a new show to watch. If you are not sure, then ask your parents to watch the show with you. Then talk about what you each saw that was good or bad about the show.
  • Movies: Just like TV shows there are a lot of movies out there that are full of bad stuff. Watching these will store bad stuff in your heart.
  • Video Games: When I was a kid we didn’t have to worry about this so much, but now there are many games that have many bad things in them. Think about the video games you are playing.
  • Talk: Even the things people say to us can be bad and can store garbage in our hearts. This doesn’t mean that you have to turn away from your friends. But, if your friends are talking about stuff that you know is wrong, then you might need to walk away. Even better would be to try to get them to talk about something else. I know that this is hard, but by doing this you can help your friends not store garbage in their heart.

So, how do I store GOOD things in my heart?

Here are some ways:

  • Bible Reading: Reading your Bible on a regular basis, even daily, is a great way to store good stuff in your heart. In fact I can’t think of any better.
  • Prayer: Talking to God is a sure fire way to store good things in your heart.
  • Church: Going to church and listening to the messages being taught is another great way to store good things in your heart.

Think about these things as you go through your day. If you have good things in your heart, but they are covered up with lots of bad things, then bad things is what will come out. However, if you start to replace the bad stuff with good stuff, it will be much easier for the good stuff to come out.





About the Author

My name is Matt Norman and I am the Children’s Pastor at The Rock in Winter Haven, FL. I am married to my high school sweet heart Kim and have two kids; Trey, 11 and Jayden, 4. I love being in ministry to children and their parents, as well as to other adults. I love sharing the gospel and other Biblical truths. I love worshiping and leading worship.  I love seeing kids grow spiritually. I love equipping God’s people for works of good service. Basically, I love ministry. In addition to ministry I have spent 17 years working in a local hospital, 16 of them in the emergency room. Trust me this experience comes in handy in children’s ministry. God is working in my life. I don’t yet know what he has planned, but I know that it is going to be cool. I’m watching and praying and doing what I can to make myself ready for whatever it is that God is working out in my life and my ministry. I love teaching kids and adults alike. If you are looking for a camp speaker, or a special speaker for your training event then use the email link at the top of the page to contact me. I would love to come along side you to have a greater impact on kids and their families for The Kingdom.