“For no good tree bears bad fruit, nor again does a bad tree bear good fruit,  for each tree is known by its own fruit. For figs are not gathered from thornbushes, nor are grapes picked from a bramble bush.  The good person out of the good treasure of his heart produces good, and the evil person out of his evil treasure produces evil, for out of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaks. [Luke 6:43-45]
 Thus says the Lord: “Cursed is the man who trusts in man and makes flesh his strength, whose heart turns away from the Lord.  “He is like a shrub in the desert, and shall not see any good come. He shall dwell in the parched places of the wilderness, in an uninhabited salt land.  “Blessed is the man who trusts in the Lord, whose trust is the Lord.  “He is like a tree planted by water, that sends out its roots by the stream, and does not fear when heat comes, for its leaves remain green, and is not anxious in the year of drought, for it does not cease to bear fruit.”  The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately sick; who can understand it?  “I the Lord search the heart and test the mind, to give every man according to his ways, according to the fruit of his deeds.” (Jer. 17:5-10)
 God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. [Ps 46:1]
 …The Lord is at hand;  do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.  And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. [Phil. 4:5-7]
 I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me. [Gal 2:20]
 Keep your heart with all vigilance, for from it flow the springs of life. [Prov 4:23]
 But I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh. [Gal 5:16]
 I am the vine; you are the branches. Whoever abides in me and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing. [John 15:5]
 If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him. [James 1:5]
1. Those who trust in man will dry up and wither like a shrub (Jer. 17:5-6)
HEAT: The difficulties and blessings (rain) of life (situation).
THORNS: Ungodly responses to life’s circumstances that flow from a heart that is in the wrong place (wrong wants and beliefs). -The difficulties and blessings in life bring to the surface what’s already in our hearts.
2. Those who trust in the Lord will be healthy fruit bearing trees (Jer. 17:7-8)
CROSS: God’s ever present redemptive help for His people in Christ (Ps. 46:1, Phil. 4:5-7).
FRUIT: Our godly responses to life’s circumstances that flow from a renewed heart changed by Christ, the gospel presently applied, and the grace of God. Living a life of repentance and faith. -What or who are you hoping in, trusting in, or currently loving more than Christ? This is what determines your words and your behavior (Faith, Hope, Love).
3. We must guard our hearts and walk in the Spirit (Jer. 17:9) -The heart is the real or essential you. The Bible refers to the inner person (mind, emotions, spirit, soul, will, etc.) as the heart. The heart is the steering wheel of every human being. Everything we do is shaped and controlled by what our hearts desire.
4. We must see ourselves and others from God’s perspective (Jer. 17:10) -Practical hope, comfort, and direction result from looking at our lives and our world from God’s overall perspective on change. -Scripture’s description of the change process that God oversees in our lives can be described using the categories of HEAT, THORNS, CROSS, and FRUIT. -The Bible’s honesty about life in this world invites me to be honest about my difficulties and my responses to them.
Identify a difficult situation or a big opportunity in your own life right now. Sort out the situation and your responses to it using the four elements of this model (HEAT, THORNS, CROSS, AND FRUIT).
Every “disorder” is ultimately a worship disorder. The greatest “Idol” in our life is the “Idol” of “I”
1 For more see “How People Change” by Dr. Paul David Tripp and Dr. Timothy Lane