Alignment Series Part 4: What are you thinking?
A couple of weeks ago, I had an incredible week. It began as one of those weeks where I felt like I was on top of the world. Things were going in the right direction. Prayers were getting answered. I had joy. But then one morning toward the end of the week, I woke up with self-defeating thoughts racing in my mind before my feet hit the ground. I can’t do this. I won’t be able to hold it all together. Who do I think I am anyway?
Immediately feelings of discouragement and acute awareness of my own inability weighed heavy. For most of the day I wrestled with the question, how I am I going to keep teaching and keep moving forward with the Alignment Series, with The Pointed Life, with homeschooling, with anything? I felt deflated and defeated.
Reject Uninvited Thoughts
Have you ever noticed how quickly and completely a thought can change our mood? Uninvited thoughts enter our minds without our control, and trigger unwanted feelings. But the truth is, we get to decide if they stay. I had a choice to make. Despite feeling down—really down and heavy—I had to recognize that those feelings were false. They were induced by the thoughts I had. Where did those thoughts come from, anyway? I had to question them rather than accept them. Once I knew they weren’t from God, I could reject them.
In the past I would have agreed with them and sunk deeper and deeper into discouragement and depression and I would have shut down, ran and hid, gone dark, and found an escape with Netflix. This time, I didn’t consult with them. I didn’t give them the time of day. I took out my journal, God’s promises, and the words that God spoke to me. I started reading them out loud even though I did not feel like it at all. I declared the truth. I took captive every thought, like 2 Corinthians 10:5 tells us do, that was contrary to truth and called my thoughts to come into alignment and obedience to Christ. In just a short while, the heaviness lifted and my mind was clear again.
Be Armed With Truth
The devil, the father of lies, is relentless. As long as we walk this earth, he will never cease trying to deceive us. He’s subtle, cunning, and ruthless, but the Bible tells us we do not have to be ignorant of his tactics. One of the ways he tries to deceive us is by lying to us in first person. Instead of saying, “You are nothing of value,” he says, “I am nothing of value.” Just because we think it, it doesn’t make it our thought.
But we still need to fight the battle in our minds. We cannot control when our minds come under attack, but we can decide who we will believe. We can question our thoughts. We do not have to allow our thoughts to be out of control. We can be intentional in our thinking. We can choose what we do with the lies that enter, and we can choose to think aligned with truth—on purpose.
I don’t know if the battle in our minds will ever cease as long as we walk this earth. But I do believe if we make the decision to keep moving forward, armed with truth, and purpose to turn our eyes away from everything else in order fix them on Jesus, we can see the victory in our lives that Christ promised us.
Journeying with you,
P.S. You can find all the posts in the series HERE.