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Gain Control of your Thoughts

Who Controls Your Mind?

Where is your mind? Have you ever been caught mind-wandering? Have you ever listened to someone giving you essential information but missed it because your mind was elsewhere? Have you ever been troubled by a sad or tragic event and couldn’t control your hopeless and despondent thoughts? Have you ever started a task completely wrong because you were not thinking about what you were doing?

In our Christian life, our point of focus is critical. Many Christians miss out on God’s best because they are not taking the time to think about what they are doing. 2 Peter 3:18 commands us to grow in the grace and knowledge of Jesus Christ. Everyone knows that if you are going to become a good doctor, nurse, scientist, teacher, builder, artist, musician, or “whatever,” you must work at studying, training, and practicing your trade to become adept at it.

If you are going to be an effective Christian, you have to work at it. I’m not talking about salvation. The Bible clearly states that salvation is a gift. You could never work good, hard, or long enough to earn salvation. (Ephesians 2:8,9). But to be a good Bible student, witness, and servant of the Lord, you must focus on learning, growing, and practicing your faith.   To do this, you must concentrate. Stop your mind from wandering all over the day’s events, plans for the week, your favorite vacation trip,  your  favorite entertainment or worst of all, all your problems.

Get your mind on Christ and His Word.

The Bible has much to say about our thought life. After urging believers  to rejoice in the Lord  and take every problem to the Lord in prayer, Paul tells us how to think in Philippians 4:8. “Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.”

Stop thinking about all your problems and replace those worried feelings with thoughts about things that are true, honest, just, pure, lovely, and of good report. We need to ask God for help to stop thinking about all the unpleasant things and to start thinking about what is good. Self-discipline required? Yes, but it is better if it is Holy Spirit-disciplined thinking.

In Colossians 3:1-4 Paul instructs believers to seek things above and set their affections on things above. The things that seem significant on earth fade away as we continually look to Christ. In the words of that old hymn,

“Turn your eyes upon Jesus,
Look full in his wonderful face,
And the things of earth will grow strangely dim,
in the light of His glory and grace.”

As Christians, we are now dead to the old life and instead have a new life in Christ. We are looking forward to our future time with Him in glory.

Philippians 2:5 instructs us to let the mind of Christ be in us. Paul then tells us how Christ humbled himself to become in the form of a servant and in the likeness of men. He left all of heaven’s glory to come down and become obedient even unto the death of the cross.

If we are to have the mind of Christ, then we need to think about life, possessions, relationships, and world news, as Christ would. We are to learn and maintain Christ’s worldview. It is entirely the opposite of the world’s view of life and events.

So, how are we to do this? Stop the mind-wandering. Stop the worldly way of thinking. Stop thinking that you have to solve every problem your way. Get into the Word of God. Do it God’s way. Study. Meditate. Memorize. As you study, apply what you learn. “Study to show thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.” (2 Timothy 2:15). Be a doer of the word, not just a hearer. (James 1:22).

Paul sheds further light on Spirit-controlled and directed thought life in 2 Corinthians 10:3-5. “For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war after the flesh: (For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds;) Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ.”

The battle for thought life control is a war that requires vigilance and diligence.

First, recognize you are in a war with Satan for control of your mind.

Second, we have spiritual weaponry that can pull down strongholds.

Third, with His help, we cast down imaginations (reasonings, thoughts) and everything that claims superiority to the knowledge of God. Beware of anything or anyone that claims to know better than the God of the Bible. This does require self-discipline. But remember, we are to be soldiers, (2 Timothy 2:3-4), and a necessary trait of soldiers is self-discipline. We do what is required, not necessarily what we want or like to do.

Finally, we throw a lasso around our thoughts and mentally, spiritually, and emotionally bring those thoughts into compliance with Christ. Not easy to do. With each issue we face, we may have to exercise this discipline repeatedly. But as we commit it to the Lord, He will give strength and energy for victory.

“Faithful is he that calleth you, who also will do it.” (1 Thessalonians 5:24). “For whatsoever is born of God overcometh the world: and this is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith.” (1 John 5:4).

 

About Dale B

I am a born-again Christian who loves to write and share the Good News about Jesus. Raised on a small Wisconsin farm and saved at age 12, I have been active in Christian service since that time. My many years as a pastor, accountant, and lay worker in the church have equipped me to help those in need. In retirement now in Texas, the Lord has led me to writing as a means of winning people to Christ and helping Christians grow in the Lord. By God’s grace I hope to be a blessing and encouragement to you.

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One comment

  1. Dale,
    Thank you for another great article and message!
    We all need to turn “our eyes on Jesus” and never look away!
    Amen.
    God Bless~

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