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Who Runs Your Mind?

"The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds. We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ."

- 2 Corinthians 10:4-5 -

 

If you were to obtain front row tickets to the habitat of my daily thoughts, you would be in for quite a show. This space, which I like to call "my mind", can act as a safe haven for positive, kind-hearted and passionate thoughts. However, it can also act as an inn for self-destructive, insecure and anxious thoughts. Most of the time, this safe haven and inn exist simultaneously with the conflicting feelings fighting for the limited amount of open rooms - a double-edged emotional roller-coaster.


This Mind Inn seems to operate on a 24-7 basis, with its doors wide open to any thought that inquires of availability. Now, if you're a human being, your mind operates quite similar to this. However, the difference exists in the type of owner that runs the operation.


Are you hospitable to the good feelings that visit? Are you warm and welcoming to guests who take care of your mind, and nourish it with care? Do you ask for early checkout from the thoughts that stir negative emotions throughout your entire property? Do you acknowledge the wrong-doings and confront them with truth so that their excuse for existing can be silenced? Do you run background checks before allowing any one of them to occupy a valued room?


To be honest, I have been a pretty lazy innkeeper. My guests come from all over the place and I allow them all to stay as long as they please. The problem is, the good ones check out early, and the bad ones tend to check in for long-term stays.


Have you ever asked God to help you feel happy when you couldn't seem to shake sadness? Have you ever asked Him to fill you with His joy, only to open your eyes and still feel anxious, overwhelmed or sad?


I know I have. At first, I would feel defeated, or like God didn't hear me. So, I'd pray again in hopes that He would deliver these positive emotions in an express, priority-mail envelope. Yet, they still wouldn't come.


After reading 2 Corinthians 10:4-5, it dawned on me.


Joy and peace, deriving from God's Truth, were waiting for the current inhabitants that derived from worldly circumstances to be evicted.


My mind was currently overbooked with negative thoughts that did not align with God's truth. It made sense to let them in, because they aligned with the physical world. But these thoughts, as I allowed them to stay, spread anxiety, fear, doubt, sadness and anger in each room they occupied. There was no room for joy or peace, and even if there was - it was not enough to overpower the comfortable occupants of negativity.


God's Word never promises us that detrimental feelings won't knock on our door. He never promises us that these feelings won't check themselves into our minds. However, He does offer us the power to overcome them - but it is a choice to enable this power.


Is it hard to kick out the negative thoughts? Of course.

Is it hard to shake negative emotions when our circumstances confirm their rightful existence? Absolutely.





But let me tell you something. When you ask God for the divine power to take these thoughts captive before they create a living space in your mind, He will help you combat their persistence with the truth of His Word. When we ask God to help us run background checks on the thoughts that knock on the door of our inn, He will guide our decisions to produce a peaceful atmosphere.


Once the negative thoughts are turned away at the door, we are able to keep rooms vacant for God to fill with positive, fulfilling reminders from His Truth.


We don't run this business alone. We are merely assistants to the greatest manager of all: God.

 

"The mind governed by the flesh is death, but the mind governed by the Spirit is life and peace"

- Romans 8:6 -

 

We can't do it all by ourselves. Our flesh will fight with every inch it has to hold onto the feelings that are evoked from surrounding circumstances. But with God in charge, we can take His leadership suggestions and deny these feelings room to stay.


This is a daily struggle - and if you're like me, probably an hourly struggle. But it is one that, with persistence, will develop into near automaticity.


What are you letting occupy your mind? What thoughts are you allowing to stay far too long? Are you trying to run your mind on your own?


What a refreshing reminder it is that we do not need to allow intrusive thoughts and feelings to run our mind. Instead, we can choose to acknowledge that we have a God who empowers us to take control and decide what thoughts get to linger.


Ask God to help you remove the negative occupants and allow Him to find positive tenants of joy, peace and hope to fill their spots.

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