Where thoughts take us – Part 5

Biblical instructions aimed at directing our thoughts are NOT intended to be demanding laws. Rather, they are practical, God oriented principles for Christian living. These principles enable Holy Spirit energised blessings. And it is these blessings that enrich our entire state of wellbeing; spiritually, mentally, and physically, enabling us to live with greater joy and security in Christ.

Where thoughts take us – Part 5
It’s understandable that during prolonged and painful struggles a believer can experience fatigue. David, at times overwhelmed, confessed that evils have encompassed me beyond number (Psalm 40:12). Believers are not removed from the ugly realities of life, but they are provided with spiritual resources to sustain them during those times.

Jeremiah 17:7 offers an incredible heart resource, blessed is the man who trusts in the Lord, whose trust is the Lord. In fact, both Jeremiah and David recognised that to trust in the Lord during nightmare periods is to invite the Lord to be the actual trust mechanism within (Psalm 40:4). Here, faith reaches out to our gracious Lord to supply what we desperately lack – TRUST. Then, faith steps forward believing that you, O LORD, you will not restrain your mercy from me; your steadfast love and your faithfulness will ever preserve me! (Psalm 40:11). This inner faith-trust should have the volume turned up full to become a prevailing voice within our thoughts.

Philippians chapter 4 is rich with thought refining directions for enabling healthier mind activity. The crescendo arrives in verse 8; whatever is true, whatever is honourable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things (Philippians 4:8). Even during the most difficult times, the believer who is trusting God to be their inner spiritual resource, chooses to think upon beneficial and God honouring things.

Faith is realistic, as it acknowledges the pains of life while dedicating periods of time to focus on the true things of God. Refusing to be silenced, faith schedules times of honourable thought which look outside of self to fix its attention on the pure and lovely things of Christ. Even when darkness seems to be all encompassing, by faith the believer will invite another believer to speak and pray into their thoughts the excellent and praiseworthy things of the Lord. Introducing righteous thoughts into your flow of thoughts can be done in many ways and at any time. We can include worship songs, Bible reading, listening to Bible teaching, watching the beauties of nature, enjoying good friendship, and prayer. Changing routines with spontaneous variations to the input of Christlike thoughts can be helpful and refreshing.

Regardless of circumstances, faith refuses to surrender to the dominant voices of fear and destruction. By inviting help from the Lord and from fellow believers, faith speaks over top of persistent pain or bewilderment. Faith creates choices when negative voices say there are none. Faith counts blessing when others say there are none. Faith reaches out for assistance when darkness says you are alone. Faith actively exchanges isolation for fellowship, silence for praise, and complaining for gratitude.

Believers dependently look to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith (Hebrews 12:2). Regular attention given to the Lord Jesus can interrupt the flow of destructive thoughts. By faith a believer is able to transform dark thoughts into thoughts of light, of love, and of certain hope. For God, who said, “Let light shine out of darkness,” has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ (2 Corinthians 4:6).

To be continued…

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