I have spent an extraordinary amount of time studying the mind. Reading the Bible first and foremost, then reading books by authors I respect whose hearts and expertise I admire. Books like: ”Left Brain Right Brain,” “Switch on Your Brain,” “Who Switched Off My Brain” by Dr. Caroline Leaf, “Mind Set” by Dr. Carol Dweck, and “Battlefield of the Mind” by Joyce Meyer.
Today I want to encourage and to remind Back 9 readers that we desperately need to control our mind and exercise our mind.
There is a very good and beneficial reason why the Bible teaches ”Take every thought captive and make it obedient to Christ” (see 2 Corinthians 10:5). The first being that A-L-L of our actions are preceded by our thoughts. Sin starts with a thought and then can be carried out by our actions Thus think about this, every sinful act is committed twice: once in our heads and once in our behavior. To win the behavior battle, we must first win the battle that takes place in our minds. Wow! All sin we commit can be “double trouble.”
As Joyce Meyer puts it, ”We need to pay attention to what we think about!” I have certainly found this to be helpful but hard. ”Harnessing my thoughts”…the hardest workout I have ever done.
Over the years I have come to realize how I think…what I think and…what I allow my eyes and ears to see and hear…is EXTREMELY IMPORTANT TO how I act. It all gets fed into my mind…which is what dominates my actions.
Carol Dweck teaches most people live with a “fixed mindset” instead of a “growth mindset” which keeps us stuck. Who wants to be stuck????
I can’t rewrite all of what I have learned from scripture and my supplemental reading but what I can do is ENCOURAGE YOU TO KNOW…if you want to have a life that counts…one that leaves a legacy of fruit and good…that accomplishes the “will of God for your life”…and lives Ephesians 2:10, ”For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do”…. then at some point….you have to learn to “harness your thoughts.” To redirect them to God, to the will of God and that is when life has a turning point toward having the “mind of Christ!”
A mindset of “growth” frees us of “leaning on our own understanding” and it directs us in “all our ways to acknowledge Christ” and HE WILL MAKE OUR PATHS STRAIGHT!
A mind focused on Christ literally brings freedom. Just like the creator of my Macbook air knows it inside out and can fix and operate this machine with ease and little effort, a mind given over to our Creator enables us to operate with Him calling the shots. After all, HE is our Creator.
It is very easy to “graze over the scripture” that teaches “take every thought captive” but realizing our mind is our computer, created by God for us to navigate life, don’t you think it is the WISE thing to do…to defer to the Creator…..who created the mind in the first place? To allow Him to direct our thoughts which ultimately directs our actions?
I encourage you today, simply seek to live Romans 12:2, “Do not be conformed to this world, but be TRANSFORMED by the renewal of your MIND, that by TESTING you may DISCERN what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect” [emphasis added].
WE were created for God to do His will His way in our lives. Realizing we cannot force God’s hand—not with faith, not with prayer, not with anything. He is God. We would all do well to stop trying to harness His power and instead, focus on allowing it to harness us…by focusing on God and His Word.
It starts with our minds! When we seek to do that…our growth and our purpose move us into a free mind to do God’s will. It is a fantastic place to be.