Monday, July 3, 2023

What Are You Thinking?

By: Joanne Viola


It only takes one comment, spoken thoughtlessly, to get our minds going. We absorb the words deep into our hearts and minds as if it is truth, allowing it to derail us for the entire day. For the entire week. For the entire month. Perhaps longer.

We dwell on the comment, allowing it to marinate in our souls. We let it fester until it oozes out onto everything in the course of our day.

It is at those times, we need to make a mind shift.

And now, dear brothers and sisters, one final thing.
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)

We have heard this verse so often, which makes it easy to miss what it is truly saying. Here are two instructions provided for us:

  1. “Fix your thoughts”. This means “to set firmly in the mind” (Webster’s Dictionary). When something is set firmly, it is nailed down, secured, it isn’t moving. We need to nail down securely who we are in Christ. We are loved, forgiven, chosen, and redeemed.
  2. Remember what to think about. Not everything is worthy of our expending time on it. May our thoughts fit the criteria. Ask, “Is this excellent and worthy of praise?”. If it is not, do not waste time and energy on it.

Paul, in writing this portion, gives us further instruction…

“Keep putting into practice all you learned and received from me –
everything you heard from me and saw me doing.”
(Philippians 4:9a NLT)

We must move into action and put this into practice. We must become deliberate about what we will allow our minds to think about all day long. It won’t come easily or naturally. We must be intentional, and this will require repeated action until we become proficient in thinking this way.

Paul, being the good teacher that he is, even tells us why we must do this:

“Then the God of peace will be with you.”
(Philippians 4:9b NLT)

As we fix our thoughts,
and live by these instructions,
His peace will begin to rule and reign in our minds.


How do you take control of your thoughts?
What can we do to “fix our thoughts”?


Image by StockSnap from Pixabay


1 comment:

  1. I read The Way of the Pilgrim in January - and have been practicing, "Lord Jesus Christ, Have Mercy on Me" since then when I start thinking obsessively about things that are like little foxes to the vine. It has been life-changing.


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