What do I spend my days thinking about? What million-and-one things rush through my mind? How much of what I think on has anything to do with God? How about you? We are told - "Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable--if anything is excellent or praiseworthy--think about such things." Philippians 4:8
How much of what goes through my head is TRUE?? Not much, most of it is lies of the enemy, lies that contradict the truth about how God loves me, how he formed me, cares about me - most the things that run through my head (without even trying) are things that put myself down, condemn myself and blame myself for ridiculous things. Sure, the occasional truth runs through my head - but nothing compared to the lies! Ok, so we gather I am thinking about things that are not always true! How about you?
How much of what goes through my head is NOBLE?? (noble covers the last two adjectives in that verse too 'excellent & praiseworthy') The word "noble" is a translation of one of the loveliest words in the Greek language, the adjective kalos. As one of the words used by the Greeks for "good," kalos meant good in the sense of fine or beautiful - that which is morally honorable or praiseworthy. If my thoughts were to be laid out on the table in front of me right now, and I had a panel of friends gathered around it...I can guarantee that they would only be able to pick out a few 'praisworthy' thoughts, in amongst all the shameful ones! I certainly think they would struggle to find any honorable ones! Ok, so we also know that I am definitely thinking on things that are disgraceful most the time! How about you?
How many of my thoughts are RIGHT?? Well, selfishness, pride and arrogance put a stop on that one right away! Most of my thinking is right wrong, because I put me first! When last did I think on things that were PURE? Pure =clean, spotless, unsullied, untainted, innocent. Almost every good thought has a partner bad thought that goes alongside it...making it very hard to find a lone, pure thought in my mind...but the pure thoughts I know I have had, have only been pure because I was thinking on God, and focused on Him - So basically, when I am not God focused, I know my thoughts are not pure - So the question is - am I staying focused on Him in thought - NO! Not nearly as much as I should! So we know from this that most my thoughts are impure! How about you?
How often do I think on LOVELY and ADMIRABLE things!? If I took a good hard look at my thoughts, would I honestly be able to call any of them lovely? When my thoughts are about others, are they lovely, are they admirable? When my thoughts are about me, are they lovely/admirable? When my thoughts are about situations, finances, government, family - are they lovely? Challenging!! I of course have very unlovely thoughts! I very obviously have alot to work on in my thinking - I fall short most of the above, and I feel so challenged, because thoughts cannot be seen, no one can really hold you accountable for your thinking, because they have no idea whats truly going on in our minds! Its something that we as Christians have to keep a watch on constantly - guarding our hearts and our minds is so important! And we are commanded to think on things pure, noble, admirable, lovely and all those great things - we are commanded to be in control of our thoughts - and there is a reason, that being that out of control thoughts will reflect in our actions - so impure thoughts can turn into impure actions, which then become even harder to control!
Most importantly though, we cannot do this on our own strength - but only with the help of God! So - with prayer, and focusing on God and things of above, lets take our thoughts captive - If we are doing this - it WILL show in our actions - Jesus will shine through us - all glory to Him!