Thursday, August 2, 2012
When the going gets tough, we don’t usually get going . . . in fact, we find ourselves giving up and giving in to our difficulties before when even give faith a fair chance. God’s plan doesn’t seem sufficient, and we render Him incapable to handle the really “big things” in life. Prayer seems “nice” until it’s all we can do and then it seems like it just isn’t enough. When despair shows up at the front door, it’s the skeleton in our closet that opens it—doubt.
We tend to build our faith on the idea that we should never have to encounter uncertainty. Yet, if all things were certain, we’d never need faith at all. Faith grows only when it’s stretched to the breaking point . . . without breaking. And when our faith is tried, we better know Truth because God will allow us to be tested (Psalm 105:19) in an effort to build our faith. At times when life is falling apart and out of control, there’s something you CAN control and that’s your thoughts.
Scripture says, “As a man thinks in his heart, so is he” (Proverbs 23:7). We need to clearly understand where the battle really lies . . . it’s in our head. It’s not doubt that is our enemy—it’s fear . . . and when we’re overcome with fear, we’re held prisoner until we’re set free by Truth. And if we’re not set free, if we’re suffering through emptiness, loneliness, discouragement, and despair, we’re not believing Truth.
We’re told specifically, in the Bible, to control our minds. If God has commanded us to do it, then there’s no excuses . . . our only option is to be obedient. In order to do that, we must become more aware of our thoughts and then filter them through God’s Word. It’s like a house cleaning of the mind . . . and it’s not sufficient to just do it in spring time. You’ll have to do it continually, each and every moment of each and every day.
It’s difficult at best to grab hold of your thoughts, but these questions will get you started:
Why am I thinking about this?
Are these thoughts building me (or others) up or tearing me down?
What does the Bible have to say about what I’m thinking about?
Do these thoughts make me feel guilty?
Do these thoughts glorify God?
It can seem “too simple.” Just think “good” thoughts. Yet, it’s not that easy. We can’t just simply change our course or direction by thinking “positively.” God’s power doesn’t reside in “positive thoughts,” it is only found in His Promises. And the only way to transform our thoughts, and ultimately our lives, is to replace the lies with Truth. You see, if your thoughts are anything other than lovely and worthy of praise (Phil. 4:8), you’re believing lies. Faith requires us to align our thoughts with God’s and that can only happen by immersing ourselves in His Word.
When the going gets tough, the battle in our minds will rage uncontrollably. Yet, with the Promises of God we are able to take every thought captive and live the victorious life we were intended to live in Christ. (If you need a head start in taking thoughts captive, visit me at ScriptureNow.com where God’s voice will speak to you.)
We are destroying speculations
and every lofty thing raised up against
the knowledge of God,
and we are taking every thought captive
to the obedience of Christ.”
1 Corinthians 10:5 (NASB)
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