It’s easier to change the flow of a small creek than a raging river. It’s the same with our thoughts, it’s easier to change the flow of our thoughts before they burst their banks and flood our lives with destruction.
Pre-emptive strikes are out of fashion these days, but if the goal is a life lived beyond the grasp of depression, emotional instability and mental illness, it’s vital we learn to control what goes on between our ears.
I know that when I say ‘Controlling your thought life is hard work at first,’ that it’s probably the understatement of the decade! However, there’s an old saying; ‘good things are worth fighting for.’ The ability to control our thought life, turning what would normally be destructive thought processes into positive healthy thought processes is the most worth tasks of all. I would say that it’s the single most important thing you could ever learn. That’s a big call, so why is it so important? Because everything flows from your thoughts. Our lives will always outwork dictated by our dominant thought processes.
Someone once said: “The bend in the road, is not the end of the road, unless you fail to take the turn.” I know I’m mixing metaphors a little but the statement is worth considering. The key to controlling our thinking is in the turning.
The bible says this: “I considered my ways, and turned to your (God’s) statues.” It’s in the turn that life changes. It’s in the turn that the miraculous happens. It’s in those moments where our thoughts are leading us in well established downward pathways that we consciously arrest our thinking process and turn it for the better that our lives are transformed. “I considered my ways” means- yes, I thought about all my concerns. “Yet I turned.” means I made a choice in this situation, to turn my thought processes in another direction. This literally changes the direction of the flow. It interrupts the way it would normally precede. When we choose to do this over and over, moment by moment, day by day we are incrementally rewiring our brains and changing our neurological pathways. There’s no escaping the fact that it’s just plan hard work to begin with, but it will, you’ll have to trust me on this, become easier with time and practice.
Here’s some homework:
Try this for the next week: The bible says; “Fix your thoughts on what is true, and honorable, and right, and pure, and lovely, and admirable. Think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise.”Philippians 4:8 (NLT) So as many times as you can, choose your thinking. What I mean is, when your thoughts would be negative or destructive. Interrupt the process, bring your thinking into your consciences mind and choose to think about things that are true, honourable, right, pure and lovely etc.
Be pre-emptive about it. In the morning speak to yourself that today you will choose your thinking. Be prepared, you won’t catch every thought, but even bringing the choice into your conscious mind will be illuminating. Give it a go and always remember;
Thinking is not by chance but by choice.
Check out some of my video content on thoughts.
Bless ya heaps, thanks for reading and we’ll talk again soon.
You don’t often hear too many pastors talk on the topic of mental illness, anxiety and depression. Yet Gary Blackford tackles these topics head on with vulnerability & honesty, as he weaves his own personal story and the truth of the scripture into a powerful and challenging message.
York Street Church of Christ Ballarat
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