Grace and peace to you fellow sojourners!
We are instructed to take every thought captive to the obedience of Christ (2 Corinthians 10:5). When a thought presents itself in our mind, we take it captive by holding it in our mind and immersing it in the richness of the Word. Does the thought line up with what the Word says is true or is the thought out of agreement with the Word? Does the thought edify your soul and spirit in truth, or does it tear down? If the thought, whether it was ours or someone else’s is true, we allow the thought permission to pass through to our heart. If it is a lie because it does not line up with the truth of the Word of God, we cast the thought down and never return to it. Pay close attention to not being bitter when the thought is cast down. We simply sort our thoughts as truths or lies according to the Word and deal with them accordingly.
When we are deeply rooted in Christ, and our hope is in Him, it will be much more difficult to be caught in the snare of preoccupation with a person to the extent that we crave their approval above the approval of God (Galatians 1:10). We are setting ourselves up for a colossal disappointment when we think a person can fill the lack, patch the hole, or light the darkness. This exalted role can only be wholly accomplished by God.
“No one undergoing a trial should say, “I am being tempted by God.”
When we allow thoughts that are out of line with God’s instructions for our healthy lives permission to proceed, we are in effect telling ourselves it is okay to allow carnal thoughts to exist alongside godly thoughts. James calls this being ‘double-minded” or divided in interest (James 4:8). James’ remedy for this is that we should be humbly cleansed and purified. We can also see this in 2 Corinthians 7:1, “Therefore, dear friends, since we have such promises, let us cleanse ourselves from every impurity of the flesh and spirit, completing our sanctification in the fear of God.” Considering patterns of thoughts we allow ourselves to entertain and not fleeting thoughts, examine the thoughts that are in direct opposition with the Word as an impurity of the flesh and ask the Lord to help align you with His truth.
We must keep a vigilant guard on what thoughts we allow ourselves to entertain. If the Word says God loves you (John 3:16), do you consider thoughts that suggest He does not? If the Word says Jesus came to give you abundant life (John 10:10), do you entertain thoughts that indicate following Him means a life of restrictions? If the Word says, humble yourself (James 4:10), do you consider thoughts that suggest the humbling will mean having a marginal existence? If the Word says to crucify your passions and desires (Galatians 5:24), do you entertain thoughts that suggest you will surely lose your individuality and the right to your emotions? If the Word says our battle is not with each other but against spiritual forces (Ephesians 6:12), do you entertain thoughts in opposition to your fellow brothers and sisters in Christ? If the Word says not to be prideful in your lifestyle (1 John 2:15-16), do you entertain thoughts that your situation can be the exception?
The life Jesus came to give is abundant spiritual life, and it is what we have right now in Him. Take control of your thoughts and stop believing untruths about the abundant life and start fueling your mind with His efficaciously captivating truths.
Because our mind is immensely powerful, we can choose to think truthful and edifying thoughts. We indeed have the power and ability to direct our thoughts. Yes, we have random, even ill-conceived thoughts at times. But we have the powerful ability to stop these thoughts and re-direct our thinking. We must direct our mind to work for us and not against us. It is not an out-of-control thinking machine with no navigator. We can choose to have godly thoughts and therefore, godly actions. When we direct our powerful mind to the things of God, our askew emotions will also begin to change. Thank you,
In His grace,