Sunday, April 22, 2012

Thought Life

I wanted to share something that I'm working on in my own life in hopes of encouraging you.

For the past several months I have struggled with some crazy thoughts! From depressing to just plain weird. Sometimes these thoughts affected the way I felt about myself or others, they had a way of setting the tone for my mood, and influenced my tone and topics during conversations. After being at home for months during the cold and flu season with newborn twins, I kept telling my husband I felt depressed, sad, etc. During one of my first Sundays back at church our pastor was preaching a sermon series called "Toxic" and his message was about our thought life. He reminded us not to just passively accept every thought that came through as truth. He reminded us that there is an enemy and other influences that affect our thoughts. I realized then that what I thought was depression was really me letting the enemy attack my mind and basically giving him permission to rule over my emotions because I wasn't guarding my mind. Now that I'm aware my thoughts and feelings have changed for the better.

Thoughts are powerful. As Christians the bible teaches us to be careful what we think about and to be on guard against wrong thinking in whatever form it takes (depressing, unkind, inappropriate, etc). I've been praying about this issue and felt encouraged by the Lord to start memorizing scriptures in the areas that my struggles are in. I think of this now as kind of a "duh" moment! Of course! What did Jesus use when Satan tempted him? God's word! So basically He reminded me that I need to hide his word in my heart and recall the words that are already hidden there.

Again, thoughts are powerful. Sin doesn't just happen, it starts with a thought. When we entertain wrong thoughts they can influence our words, actions, attitudes, reactions, etc.

Here are some tips to help control your thoughts:

1) Proactively guard your mind and recognize when your thoughts are negative, wrong, inappropriate, unkind... Don't just be passive when thoughts come up, if they aren't right DO SOMETHING ABOUT IT.

(For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds;) Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ; (2 Corinthians 10:4, 5 KJV)

2) Give your thoughts the thought test based on Philippians 4:8- Is it true? Honest? Just? Pure? Lovely? Of good report? Does it have any virtue or any praise?

If your thoughts don't meet this standard, trade them for new, better ones!

3) Hide God's word in your heart and keep it fresh in your mind (memorize scriptures that will help you think good thoughts or ones that address areas you are struggling in)

How can a young person stay pure? By obeying your word. I have tried hard to find you— don’t let me wander from your commands. I have hidden your word in my heart, that I might not sin against you. (Psalm 119:9-11 NLT)

4) Be careful what you put in your mind. This is huge! We are bombarded all day every day with all kinds of media and various people in our lives. BE CAREFUL!!! Garbage in, garbage out. Be careful what you watch, read, listen to and the conversations you have with others. ...yes, I just said "be careful" 3 times, it's important!

A good person brings good out of the treasure of good things in his heart; a bad person brings bad out of his treasure of bad things. For the mouth speaks what the heart is full of. (Luke 6:45 GNTD)

5) Renew your mind by replacing the old kinds of thoughts with better ones.

Do not be conformed to this world (this age), [fashioned after and adapted to its external, superficial customs], but be transformed (changed) by the [entire] renewal of your mind [by its new ideals and its new attitude], so that you may prove [for yourselves] what is the good and acceptable and perfect will of God, even the thing which is good and acceptable and perfect [in His sight for you]. (Romans 12:2 AMP)

6) Remember your enemy is real and he is a liar. If the devil is feeding you lies, remind him of the truth!

He was a murderer from the beginning and does not stand in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaks a falsehood, he speaks what is natural to him, for he is a liar [himself] and the father of lies and of all that is false. John 8:44

7) Pray, pray, pray!! When you surrender to God and ask Him to handle your problems, troubles, worries, etc, he will give you peace beyond understanding to guard your mind & heart!!

Do not fret or have any anxiety about anything, but in every circumstance and in everything, by prayer and petition (definite requests), with thanksgiving, continue to make your wants known to God. And God’s peace [shall be yours, that tranquil state of a soul assured of its salvation through Christ, and so fearing nothing from God and being content with its earthly lot of whatever sort that is, that peace] which transcends all understanding shall garrison and mount guard over your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus. (Philippians 4:6, 7 AMP)

Have a great week!
<3 Dina

Friday, April 13, 2012

Being honest

I've been thinking this morning about how honesty and trust go hand in hand. I'm so thankful that God is not a man that He should lie. He is our example of trustworthiness and truth. When you are faced with situations and must choose to tell the truth or a falsehood, tell the truth! God will be proud of you, your conscience will be clear before him, and people will discover honesty is one of your character traits! Being truthful is a way to let your light shine for Jesus in this dark world.

Have a great week!

Behold, You desire truth in the inner being; make me therefore to know wisdom in my inmost heart. (Psalm 51:6 AMP)

But when He, the Spirit of Truth (the Truth-giving Spirit) comes, He will guide you into all the Truth (the whole, full Truth)... (John 16:13 AMP)

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Let our children see...

Loved this passage of scripture, what a great prayer! I want to see God working and i want my children to see His glory!!! :)

Wishing you a great day!

Teach us to realize the brevity of life,
so that we may grow in wisdom. O LORD, come back to us!
How long will you delay?
Take pity on your servants! Satisfy us each morning with your unfailing love,
so we may sing for joy to the end of our lives. Give us gladness in proportion to our former misery!
Replace the evil years with good. Let us, your servants, see you work again;
let our children see your glory. And may the Lord our God show us his approval
and make our efforts successful.
Yes, make our efforts successful! (Psalm 90:12-17 NLT)