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Monday, June 29, 2015

My Life Is Shaped by My Thoughts

In review of Proverbs 4:23 it says, “Be careful how you think; your life is shaped by your thoughts.”

Bottom Line:
Be careful and guard how you think, as your life will be shaped by it.

What this means to me:
I should be very careful and guard my heart, (the thought center or cockpit of my life), for the things I allow and think about will shape and influence everything in my life.

What I’m learning is that God is far more interested in changing my mind than in changing my circumstances.

I know I would want God to take away all of the problems, pain, sorrow, suffering, sickness, and sadness in my life. But God wants to work on me first, because transformation won’t happen in my life until I renew my mind, until my thoughts begin to change.

There are three important reasons that I need to learn to manage my mind:

First, I manage my mind, because my thoughts will control my life. Proverbs 4:23 says, “Be careful how you think; your life is shaped by your thoughts” (TEV). The power of my thoughts has tremendous ability to shape my life for good or for bad.

Secondly, I manage my mind, because my mind is the battleground for sin. All temptation happens in the mind. Paul says in Romans 7:22-23, “I love to do God’s will so far as my new nature is concerned; but there is something else deep within me, in my lower nature, that is at war with my mind and wins the fight and makes me a slave to the sin that is still within me. In my mind I want to be God’s willing servant, but instead I find myself still enslaved to sin” (TLB). One of the reasons for mental fatigue is because of the battle in my brain that’s going on all the time. It’s debilitating because it’s intense, and it’s intense because my mind is my greatest asset. Satan wants my greatest asset!

Thirdly, I manage my mind, because it’s the key to peace and happiness. An unmanaged mind leads to tension. A managed mind leads to tranquility. An unmanaged mind leads to conflict. A managed mind leads to confidence. An unmanaged mind leads to stress. When I don’t try to control my mind and the way I direct my thoughts, I will have an enormous amount of stress in life. But a managed mind leads to strength and security and serenity. “Letting your sinful nature control your mind leads to death. But letting the Spirit control your mind leads to life and peace” (Romans 8:6 NLT, second edition).

In summary, I really need to protect what goes into my mind. The warning in the various translations of this verse is to be careful and to closely guard. It is so easy to just not think but let the media of today shape my thoughts. Today I thank you God for the warning and reminder to watch what I feed my mind. I need to be careful with what I’m allowing in based on the TV programs I watch and what catches my interest as I surf the internet. In the long run, my life will ultimately be shaped by my thoughts.

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