Every serious student of the Word knows the enemy wants to control and direct our thought lives.
However, there is someone else undergirding you…giving you what you need to keep from being led astray.
Jeremiah 29:11 says:
“For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the LORD, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end.”
Now I realize you’ve heard this scripture probably more times than you can remember, but I want you to pay particular attention to what I’m about to say. . .it can be a life-changing revelation.
If you’ve heard it. . .you probably need to be reminded of it. But if you don’t know it then GET READY. . .your life is about to change.
The verse says God knows the “THOUGHTS” that HE “THINKS” toward you. I find it interesting to note that He didn’t say the thoughts He thinks about you. No, He said, “The thoughts that He thinks toward you.”
Simply said, the Master of Universe is sending thoughts your way.
Did you get what I just said? God is sending thoughts your way.
In our daily lives, we’re besieged by thoughts from every direction. . .most of them negative, I might add or meant to drag you into the world’s way of thinking.
A number of studies point out that the average American is exposed to over 3,000 advertising messages a day. . .this includes radio, TV, internet, billboards or any other medium that promotes a product, cause or lifestyle.
Assuming that you sleep eight hours a day that means that during the other sixteen hours a day. . .you are exposed to over 3 ½ advertising messages every minute of the day. During the year you will be exposed to 1,095,000 advertising messages.
By the way, it grieves me to say that seldom is there an intelligent commercial…most of them are geared to the base, the vain, the stupid and the greedy side of human nature.
Here’s a fact! You can’t have a negative thought and a positive thought at the same time….your brain doesn’t work that way.
I want you to write this down.
If you are interested in changing where you are in life right now, you will be required to change your thought life.
Where do you get your information from? Who do you listen to? How do you handle the thoughts that come your way?
Here’s a five-step process to help you understand how to change your thought life.
Are you guarding the thoughts you receive every waking moment of your day?
What do you do if they don’t line up with God's thoughts, ideas, instructions and commandments?
Do you purposely cast them down, so they’re not detrimental to your mental and Christian growth?
With all the economic turmoil in the world. . .and the uncertainty in so many areas of life. . .millions of people are allowing fear to grip their hearts.
Is God wringing His hand in heaven wondering what to do down here? Never!
God knows the end of everything from the beginning.
What does the Word of God say about fear? 2 Timothy 1:7 in the Amplified Bible says:
“For God did not give us a spirit of timidity (of cowardice, of craven and cringing and fawning fear), but [He has given us a spirit] of power and of love and of calm and well-balanced mind and discipline and self-control.“
Purpose in your heart to only receive the right kind of thoughts. Don’t worry. Pray and God will lead you in peace.
The second step to taking control of your thoughts is to analyze the thoughts that you’re receiving.
Have you ever had a Kamikaze thought and wondered to yourself. . .where did that come from?
It’s important to understand where unrighteous, unwholesome and negative thoughts come from.
Once you identify the source of unscriptural thoughts. . .then you can eliminate, expose and reduce the impact of that particular source in your life.
2 Corinthians 10:5 in the Amplified Bible says:
“[Inasmuch as we] refute arguments and theories and reasonings and every proud and lofty thing that sets itself up against the [true] knowledge of God; and we lead every thought and purpose away captive into the obedience of Christ…”
In order to be successful in everyday life … we MUST take captive (make our prisoner) every thought that comes to our minds and analyze it. We compare its obedience (or lack of obedience) to God’s will in our life, before we reject or accept it.
Which means…if we don’t read the Word, we won’t be able to do what’s necessary. Think carefully about what that means.
3. Accepting or Rejecting
If you entertain a negative or sinful thought. . .it means you begin to accept it. . .allowing it a place to lodge in your mental hard drive.
Remember, when it comes to thoughts. . .you must either accept or reject them.
One of the hardest things for believers to understand is that some of the thoughts, ideas and suggestions are from some very well-meaning family members and friends who may not realize what they are saying is wrong.
If you ever begin to entertain any of bad/evil/negative thoughts, ideas and suggestions … then you’re allowing them to build the wrong type of stronghold in your life.
2 Corinthians 10:4 in the Amplified Bible says:
“For the weapons of our warfare are not physical [weapons of flesh and blood], but they are mighty before God for the overthrow and destruction of strongholds,
Strongholds are a collection/grouping of thoughts, ideas and suggestions. If your stronghold is not based in the Word, it will cause you to act on information that is wrong.”
When you analyze and reject negative or sinful thoughts. . .the enemy will be defeated.
Jeremiah 48:41 in the New Living Translation says:
“Its cities will fall, and its strongholds will be seized. Even the mightiest warriors will be in anguish like a woman in labor.”
The scripture says that the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but mighty for the pulling down of strongholds or anything that does NOT line up with God’s Word.
Every believer has the authority to use God’s word to pull down thoughts and ideas the enemy wants to use against you.
It’s not enough to cast down imaginations … you must begin to replace those negative thoughts that you’ve previously had … with truth from the Word of God.
The void must be filled and He’s waiting for your response.
1 Chronicles 28:9 says:
“And Solomon, my son, learn to know the God of your ancestors intimately. Worship and serve him with your whole heart and a willing mind. For the LORD sees every heart and knows every plan and thought. If you seek him, you will find him. But if you forsake him, he will reject you forever.”
His desire is for the right kind of thoughts to be in your mind. Right thoughts allow God to manifest good things in your life.
Romans 12:2 in the Amplified Bible says:
“Do not be conformed to this world (this age), [fashioned after and adapted to its external, superficial customs], but be transformed (changed) by the [entire] renewal of your mind [by its new ideals and its new attitude], so that you may prove [for yourselves] what is the good and acceptable and perfect will of God, even the thing which is good and acceptable and perfect [in His sight for you].”
In the New Living Translation. . .Romans 12:2 says:
“. . . let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect.”
If you want God to transform you . . . then you need to change the way you think. How do you accomplish this task?
Philippians 4:8 in the Message Bible provides a powerful insight:
“Summing it all up, friends, I'd say you'll do best by filling your minds and meditating on things true, noble, reputable, authentic, compelling, gracious—the best, not the worst; the beautiful, not the ugly; things to praise, not things to curse. Put into practice what you learned from me, what you heard and saw and realized. Do that, and God, who makes everything work together, will work you into his most excellent harmonies.”
The bottom line and this should be no surprise . . . you change your life by casting down imaginations and focusing on the Word of God.
Psalm 40:17 in The Living Bible says:
“I am poor and weak, yet the Lord is thinking about me right now!”
Not only is He thinking about you. . .but He knows what you’re thinking as well. That’s why I’m giving you seven ways to change your thought life and helping you avoid the ruts of life.
1. God knows what you’re thinking regardless of your geographical or spiritual location.
Psalm 139:2 in the New Living Translation says:
“You know when I sit down or stand up. You know my thoughts even when I’m far away.”
When you look at a member of the opposite sex walk by. . .you may think nobody knows what you’re thinking. NOT TRUE.
When you surf the internet while everyone else in the family is asleep. . .you may think nobody will ever know what you’re looking at. NOT TRUE.
If you take several things from your workplace. . .you may think the items will never missed and nobody will ever know what you did. NOT TRUE.
Matthew 9:4 in the New Living Translation says:
“Jesus knew what they were thinking, so he asked them, ‘Why do you have such evil thoughts in your hearts?’”
You can fool a lot of people. . .but your thought life can never be hidden from God.
2. God even “knows what unbelievers are thinking” but your Heavenly Father is giving them a way out.
Matthew 6:32 in the New Living Translation says:
“These things dominate the thoughts of unbelievers, but your heavenly Father already knows all your needs.”
Every person. . .even the one with the darkest thoughts and actions can be forgiven and cleansed of all unrighteousness.
3. You cannot continue putting positive thoughts and negative thoughts into the same environment and expect success.
If you’re putting the Word of God into your mental thought process but you’re also mentally entertaining negative, ungodly thoughts, then you might survive, but it will be difficult for you to thrive.
The last part of James 1:8 says:
“…. A double minded man is unstable in all his ways.”
Luke 11:17 in the New Living Translation says:
“He knew their thoughts, so he said, ‘Any kingdom divided by civil war is doomed. A family splintered by feuding will fall apart.’”
James 3:12 says:
“Can the fig tree, my brethren, bear olive berries? either a vine, figs? so can no fountain both yield salt water and fresh.”
According to an article from the Mayo Clinic here are six advantages of being a positive thinker:
“An increased life span.
“Lower rates of depression and distress.
“Greater resistance to the common cold.
“Better mental and physical well-being.
“Better coping skills during times of stress.
“A more natural ability to form relationships and cement bonds.”
4. You must refocus your thinking on God, His Word and His solutions to every problem you’re facing. You’ve got to trust God to be God. . .doing what His Word says.
Romans 12:2 in the New Living Translation says:
“Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect.”
Isaiah 26:3 also in the New Living Translation says:
“You will keep in perfect peace all who trust in you, all whose thoughts are fixed on you!”
Don’t allow your thoughts. . .or anyone else to break your focus off the things of God.
What you focus on in your life will expand.
When problems arise. . .don’t focus on the problem. . .focus on the solution and you will become known as a problem solver.
5. Make sure your thoughts are well-pleasing to Him.
Psalm 104:34 in the New Living Translation says:
“May all my thoughts be pleasing to him, for I rejoice in the Lord.”
The Living Bible translation of Psalm 104:34 concludes by saying: “. . .he is the source of all my joy.”
Psalm 19:14 says:
“Let the words of my mouth, and the meditation of my heart, be acceptable in thy sight, O LORD, my strength, and my redeemer.”
According to Strong’s Concordance the Hebrew word for acceptable is H7522 and it means:
“pleasure, delight, favour, goodwill, acceptance, will”
However, H7522 comes from the root word H7521 which means:
“to be pleased with, be favorable to, accept favorably”
If you want to have a life worth living. . .the wisdom found in Ephesians 5:10 in Young’s Literal Translation says it all.
“In your daily life make sure you’re doing what is well-pleasing to the Lord.”
6. The only effective way to change your life is by changing your thoughts and attitudes.
A new house will make you feel better about where you live.
A new car will make you feel better about what you drive.
New clothes will make you feel better about what you wear.
Your happiness or what makes you feel better should never be based on things. . .because they come and go.
However, when we allow God to transform us into a new person by changing the way we think. . .that’s life-changing and not a temporary fix.
What’s the most effective way to change the way you think?
Isaiah 28:9,10 says:
“Whom shall he teach knowledge? …. For precept must be upon precept, precept upon precept; line upon line, line upon line; here a little, and there a little.”
Ephesians 4:23 in the New Living Translation says:
“Instead, let the Spirit renew your thoughts and attitudes.”
7. Let His thoughts be your thoughts.
Psalm 49:3 in the New Living Translation says:
“For my words are wise, and my thoughts are filled with insight.”
Psalm 51:10 says:
“Create in me a clean heart, O God; and renew a right spirit within me.”
Joshua 1:8 gives us the key to a successful thought life and is the only time in the King James Version where the word ‘success’ is used:
“This book of the law shall not depart out of thy mouth; but thou shalt meditate therein day and night, that thou mayest observe to do according to all that is written therein: for then thou shalt make thy way prosperous, and then thou shalt have good success.”
The Word says that we have the mind of Christ . . . so it’s time to let His thoughts become our thoughts.
Isaiah 55:8,9 is often misinterpreted as a scripture that says we can never know God’s thoughts, but let’s look at it more closely:
“For My thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways My ways, says the Lord. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are My ways higher than your ways and My thoughts than your thoughts.”
God is making a declaration that He is not only above but far above our thought process. However, we cannot distinguish that God’s thought will not be our natural thoughts.
God would not be constantly reaching out for man if He did not want us to come up to His way of thinking. Understand this exactly how I said it. God is saying His thoughts are above ours. Too often Christians want to bring God’s thoughts down to where we are.
God wants to bring our thought life up to His level.
In 2 Corinthians 3:8, the scripture says we can achieve much more than we think of ourselves:
“But we all, with open face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord.”
And 1 Corinthians 2:16 declares:
“For who hath known the mind of the Lord, that he may instruct him? but we have the mind of Christ.”
The best way to change your thought life is to spend your time with the One who provides permanent solutions to the problems you’re facing. And He not only knows your name. . .He knew you before you were formed in your mother’s womb.
I also want to share with you Jeremiah 29:11 in New International Reader’s Version which says:
“I know the plans I have for you,” announces the Lord. “I want you to enjoy success. I do not plan to harm you. I will give you hope for the years to come.”
Everything that allows us success in this life goes back to understanding God’s way of thinking.BLOG COMMENTS POWERED BY DISQUS