5 Ways to Gain Control of Your Thoughts
Brenda was so greatly affected by her husband’s addiction that her thoughts were moving every waking minute. Daily she experienced thoughts filled with fear and those terrible “what if…” questions that painted a picture of more lost tempers, tears, and troubled hearts. These thoughts had taken control of her life as she attempted to keep some level of peace to prevent trouble from repeating itself. Brenda found she was not that powerful. Nothing she could do made for lasting peace, in fact, what resembled peace wasn’t authentic. She finally gave up trying and with God’s help, she focused on getting herself mentally and emotionally healthy.
Through Bible study and spiritual life coaching, Brenda learned she was responsible for her own thoughts and behavior, and that she didn’t have to allow her emotions and untamed thoughts to control her life. She began focusing more on the truth in God’s Word and has since found greater freedom and peace.
Maybe you also struggle with your thoughts. The Bible teaches us to “take every thought captive and make it agree with God’s truth” (2 Corinthians 10:5) and to “not copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think.”
You may be thinking, “But you don’t know what my life is like! How is this possible?” Whatever we focus on grows larger, for better or for worse. My question to you is, what would you have grow larger in your life? The problems you have or your faith and peace in God? Here are 5 ways to gain control of your thoughts.
- Accept responsibility for your thoughts. You can learn to exercise control over your thoughts. Paul tells us in Philippians 4 how to think, express ourselves, and what to focus on. If this weren’t possible, the Bible wouldn’t say it. Many times, we are allowing our emotions to control our thoughts and decisions for us, but we are to learn to express our emotions to God and then make mature and balanced decisions.
- Practice renewing your mind. Your mind must change if you want your behavior to change. Our belief system directs our thoughts, words, and behavior. Focus on the truth of God’s Word in the area where your mind needs to be changed. Allow God to transform you by the renewing of your mind (Rom. 12:2). Using affirmations with scriptures or statements of truth are a great way to accomplish this.
- Stop and think before you react. As your spiritual discipline grows, your life will take on new balance. When difficult challenges come, you can remember that you have a choice – whether to react out of emotions or to stop, think, and respond out of wisdom and self-control.
- Take your negative and harmful thoughts captive with God’s help. Paul urges us to “take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ” (Rom. 12:21). When you realize you are focused on thoughts or emotions that are negative, worrisome, or shaming, confront those thoughts. Stop and pray, confessing your thoughts to God, and asking for His help. It will take time to change your thinking patterns, but it is possible with the Holy Spirit’s help and worth the time and effort to increase and build your life on peace.
- Intentionally choose to focus your thoughts on the right things. We are to think about those things that are “true, noble, right, pure, lovely, and admirable” (Phil. 4:8 NIV). When we think on those things, God’s peace is a wonderful result. Using affirmations, worship music, scripture verses, and positive statements are highly effective tools that help you gain control of your thoughts.
It is possible to live a life aware of our thoughts and taking them captive! We do have an enemy, Satan, who will try to plant harmful thoughts in our minds, but God gave us the Holy Spirit to empower us. We have authority over our own thoughts – they aren’t something that happens to us. God gave us the ability to renew our minds and belief systems. The discipline and practice take time, but the results are a focused, mature mind, and a balanced and healthy life, the way He intended life to be.
I have 2 free gifts for you! Send me a message and request these gifts!
- Truth for Life CardsTM designed for the renewing of your mind
- The 12 Steps for Changing Your Life by Changing the Way You Think eBook
Our minds don’t just change by themselves. It changes for better or for worse based on the thoughts we hold in mind. If you want to change your life, change the way you think. And Brenda? Yeah, she pursued renewing her mind around the peace of Christ and she’s much happier today. She doesn’t get it right all the time, but God’s truth has been a healer and can be for you. It’s like a salve – all you have to do is apply it daily.
There’s grace for the journey,
From the desk by the window where the sunshine is warming the cold January air.
(c) 2018 Robin Lewis – Sozo Life & Leadership, LLC – all rights reserved.
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