thinking

…… Why think ye EVIL in your hearts ? ? (Matthew 9:4)

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 10:5)

If we really analysed every thought as to it’s SOURCE and EFFECT…. certainly we would toss out a lot more thoughts and consequently make progress in our Christian life…. we would also manifest the fruit of the spirit more continuously… and this would enhance our physical well-being as well as our spiritual state.

The unrighteous heathen believe all their thoughts are “theirs”…. therefore it is so easy for them to be controlled by demons….. they dont even know that they are being controlled !

Even the Christian lapses into thinking thoughts that do not originate with the Holy Spirit of God ….. on numerous occasions.

So just HOW do we CONTROL our thoughts ?

1. Receive the gift of the Holy Spirit because he enables us to have the POWER (ability) to CONTROL our thoughts… and every other area of our lives also.

2. Decide that you actually  WANT to control your thoughts (and make them pleasing to God)…. and then actually attempt to do it…. by MONITORING what you are thinking about and REPLACING bad thoughts with good ones.

3. ASK God to bring to your attention when your thoughts are not right.

4. REPLACE the thoughts (that he brings to your attention) with other “purer” thoughts.

POINTS to NOTE are:

1. You cannot think about “nothing” for any length of time…. so it is important to replace the bad thoughts with good thoughts IMMEDIATELY.  (Philippians 4:8)

2. This is a life-long process… as long as you are living, you are thinking…. you are bound to slip-up on many occasions…. sometimes the Holy Spirit convicts us in our spirit AFTER we have thought the thought, said the words or done the deed…. and we might wonder WHY He did not bring it to our attention BEFORE (as He has done on many previous occasions…. assuming that we have living this way for some time).

We are free-agents… given by God, the right of free-will…. the demons are not permitted to JAM (force or override our thoughts) our minds (otherwise we would all be madmen) and the Holy Spirit does not jam our minds either…. so if we are thinking about something fairly intensely, neither the Holy Spirit or the demons can “pass any thoughts” to us until a “window of opportunity” arises “between one thought and another”.

Of course, to clarify, let me say that the demons are limited (as created beings) and the Holy Spirit can do ANYTHING (has no limitation)….. however, except in rare case of our most imminent DANGER, the Holy Spirit would not normally “violate” our normal thinking processes anymore than He would overturn the normal physical laws in the material Universe.

So, in conclusion, we have to seek and ask for the help of the Holy Spirit AND we have to be sensitive for His prompting in our minds….. if we “miss” His leading (in regard to some particular thought) and later come “under conviction”… there is no need to despair, simply confess, ask His forgiveness and carry on HAPPILY….. He knows the frailty of our minds and bodies and delights to give us another opportunity…. it is the demons who come with thoughts of defeat, despair and hopelessness because they are delighted to capitalize on such an opportunity of grief on our part.

Finally, your dreams and night’s sleep is dependent on your waking concious thought life…… if you saturate your waking life with Scripture (Psalm 77:12, Psalm 119:11) and GOOD thoughts (Philippians 4:8)….. your night’s sleep (Psalm 4:8) and your overall physical health and well-being will IMPROVE.

Prayer for Today:

Loving Heavenly Father, teach me to “walk in Your ways” and “fellowship with You”….. and please never stop shepherding me even when I foul up or fail to follow your leading in some matter or thought…. Amen

unbelief

To an “educated”  person, our  faith is “nonsense”

because in a child-like manner…. we believe God for all sorts of matters in our everyday lives…. and when it happens according to our prayers, we thank God and our faith is strengthened…. it is the times that it does NOT happen according to our prayers that give the unbeliever the opportunity to discredit us…. “see I told you so” they gleefully tell us “all those other times you thought GOD was making things happen according to your prayers it was just “good luck” and “chance”… and this is their proof…. FAILURE.

So what are we to make of this ?…. certainly everything we pray for is not going to happen for several reasons:

1. God is NOT a genii…. “your wish is my command”… and we are supposed to be serving Him (and not the other way around).

2. Even if we are “good” saints and totally dedicated… we should be praying ACCORDING TO HIS WILL… and sometimes we just dont know what His will is in some cases.

3. Other factors may be involved… besides our wishes and His will…. what about the wills of other people  ? (the people we are praying for)

It is harder to exercise faith when various prayers (seem) to go unanswered…. but we are not to stop praying or exercising faith (Luke 18:1 – 8)….. and some prayers have been answered many years after those prayers were made.

The way I see it, there is always a positive and a negative way to look at everything…

FAITH is the positive way…. faith goes on even when things are not looking so rosy

UNBELIEF is the negative way…. once unbelief sets in….. it is followed by frustration and despair…. is there any advantage to this ?

Optimism versus pessimism….. looking on the bright side…. versus looking on the dark side…. Thankfullness and praise versus grumbling and complaining.

Take your choice today.

Prayer for Today:

Loving Heavenly Father, Thank you for all your many blessings every day…. help us to focus our attention on your goodness and the many blessings you pour out for us each and every day…. help us to have right thoughts towards you… and guide us what you would have us to pray about. Amen.

passivity

Passivity is one of the serious dangers facing people these days…. both the heathen and the Christians are affected by it…. passivity is basically about “surrendering our will” and just “going with the flow”…. I have a lot more to say about this, but today I make a start.

We have seen (in previous posts) that satan’s inability to “organize” this world according to his wishes is because of man’s FREE WILL….. God made it a “law” (which He also respects) that man must be allowed free will… the right to choose his own destiny.

We have also seen (in previous posts) that even when human’s recognize (and many do not) the great IMPORTANCE of their free-will in the SPIRITUAL realm….. they CANNOT remain “neutral”…. for many years, I tried this approach….  knowing that God loved me, yet realizing that I could not conquer satan’s activity in my life and perceiving the closer I came to God the more this activity intensified, I backed away from “total surrender to God” (I perceived myself to be a hypocrite to claim such surrender and knew that God could not be fooled)…… yet on the “other” side, I would NEVER “completely surrender” to satan either…. I just could not “bow down and worship” satan because I knew the spiritual consequences of such a decision…. and all I was trying to do in my spirit was play “one against the other”…. both God and satan wanted my soul, and all I wanted was to be “left alone” to enjoy a “quiet life of peace and contentment with no suffering or misery (spiritual or physical)”…. I wanted out of spiritual warfare… I wanted to just enjoy my life on earth in a modest way (not an “evil” person but not a “dedicated Christian” either)…. am I so different from most other humans ???… I mean, who wants war their whole life ??

For many years I managed to “get away” with this…. I was happy with my life… but the “status quo” eventually changed (I was a fool to think I could maintain a “non-aligned” position INDEFINITELY)…. I see it so clearly now, how the enemies of God were subtly working on me behind the scenes… although they could not break my “will” (and I was never passive) they eventually managed to gain “foothold” and “territory” in my life (too long a story at this time)….. GOD rescued me and completely delivered me from their clutches in what is the most traumatic and terrifying experiences that I have ever had in my life (as yet).

This post too long for a “daily” message….. but here are few points to ponder…

God is NEVER “pushy’… HE WANTS US to use all our faculties actively  as we “work with Him” in accomplishing “great things” in our lives…. it’s scary at times, but we have to TRUST HIM COMPLETELY as we follow His directions.

Satan and his horde of demons HATE US…. there is ZERO “love” for humans with them… even those humans who bow down to him and say “Lord satan” are just “disposable vessels” that he will use for a while and then discard….. even if he gives them “the whole world in the palm of their hand” it’s only for a FEW BRIEF YEARS and then like a dream it all disintegrates and changes into something HIDEOUS and HORRIBLE and their end is TERRIBLE.

My earthly life can never be the same again….  I KNOW “beyond this life”…. but more important than that I know GOD better….. humans have such “bad” ideas about God, they think that He wants them to be like pawns on a chessboard that He  may maneuver them around as He pleases. They feel that He wants them to be absolutely PASSIVE, possessing  no power to choose or decide… so either they just sit back and wait on Him to “do something” or else they take “blind and uncertain steps” always looking over their shoulder and expecting Him to punish them at any moment for having done “something wrong”….  they either see God as a “stern judge who forbids them from doing what they want to do” and ready to hammer them “if they step out of line”  OR ELSE they see Him as a permissive “convenience” that will overlook whatever they do and give them whatever they want and put His “rubber stamp” of approval on their lives just because they “went to church… or sang in the choir… or “witnessed” to somebody…. or gave money to some church or charity.”

All these views of God are encouraged and gleefully promoted by the devil and his demons…. and God (apparently) “isn’t doing much” to correct these distorted ideas about His Character and Personality…. why ?

It’s all in the Bible already…. the whole “plan” from start to finish… all laid out for for all (angels, demons, humans) to see…

the whole world has the Bible… it is the most printed and distributed book on the planet…..and  He reveals Himself to those who seek Him. (Jeremiah 29:13, John 1:38 – 39)

Do you feel “compelled” to do something (go somewhere, buy something or say something) and wonder if it “could be God’s will”…. the more overpowered you become with this “compulsion” the less likely it is to be God’s will….. because the Holy Spirit is very gentle and soft and easily missed (except you be in immediate peril)…. on the other hand “irresistible compulsions” are exactly the way that satan’s demons get you to do what they want you to do….. spiritual DISCERNMENT…. along with the written Word of God….. and you are expected to TEST “notions in your head” and use all your common sense (etc.) when trying to decide if a matter (or thought) is from GOD or the devil.

God wants us to serve Him with all our senses intact…. but the devil is quite happy with puppets and robots as long as HE GETS WHAT HE WANTS (sound familiar ?)

God is “never in a hurry but always on time”….. satan and his demons want you to sin “quick” (before you think too much about it or change your mind) hence the “compulsive” nature of most of their “suggestions”…. and if you entertain “their” thoughts after you know that it’s not of God… your “compulsion” may quickly turn into an “obsession” and the “pressure” will not ease up until the SIN has been committed.

In future posts…. I hope to explain how YOU CAN “guard” your thoughts… know the “good” ones from the “bad”… and CAST OUT the “bad”…. effectively RE-GAINING control of your MIND…. which is where it all starts.

Prayer for Today:

Loving Heavenly Father, nobody can ever care for us as much as you care for us…. may your children discover that YOU are all we will ever need….  our best good comes from YOU and YOU alone. Amen.

thoughts

Today we look at thoughts…. where they come from…. and the effect that they have on your life…. I will not actually quote the Bible verses but I will ask you to look them up because it will help you to “learn” your Bible and such practice will enable you to find passages of Scripture faster.

Matthew 9:4 …. tells us that many of your thoughts originate with you…. you are the person doing the thinking… and this verse also tells us that Jesus can read your thoughts.

NOWHERE in the Bible does it say that satan can know your thoughts (what you are actually thinking about)…. but the Bible does tell us that satan can plant thoughts (ideas) into your head (John 13:2)…. and he can then observe your behaviour closely to see if you are still  thinking about what he has planted…… your words, reactions (eye movement, heart rate) and other actions  can then be carefully observed by him to determine how successful he has been at getting you to think about the idea that he has planted in your head.

Satan is not allowed to torment you continuously (indefinitely)…. his attacks come in waves….. and then he departs….. (Luke 4:13 and 1 Corinthians 10:13)

Jesus is able to help you during your temptation if you will only seek his help (Hebrews 2:18)

For the unsaved people… those who do not love God…. the vast bulk of people “doing their own thing”…  their thoughts are RUBBISH… (Psalms 94:11 and Matthew 15:19…. also 1 Corinthians 3:20)

For those who love God….. He has only GOOD thoughts for them….  read Jeremiah 29:11…. God has thoughts too, about us, and I think that is wonderful.

Our thoughts, determine our actions and our lives (Proverbs 23:7)…. this is why it is so important to think GOOD thoughts (Philippians 4:8)

We have control over our thoughts (2 Corinthians 10:5) …. and we must exercise that control at all times and not just “think whatever comes into our head”

The consequences of thinking on satan’s ideas can be disastrous (Acts 5:3 – 5)

Prayer for today:

Ask God to give you a “warning thought” (through His Holy Spirit) every time your own thoughts “wander off” in the direction of FOOLISHNESS and EVIL…… and then when He “pokes you” in your mind…. STOP… and CORRECT your thoughts to “something  proper”

Finally…. you cannot get enough of Scripture into your thoughts…. the more Scripture you know the better….. Jesus used Scripture when He was tempted of the devil….. and you can do it too…. in fact, you are expected to do it… so ask His help and start by actually looking up the Bible verses I gave you today…. and then maybe go on to read a Chapter or two.