Pastor Eddie B. Woodard
If the bestselling books accurately reflect what’s important to a great many people, then freedom is a top priority. Check a current list of the most popular “how to” titles and see how many deal with becoming free—in finances, health, work, attitudes, and relationships. Publishers know that in our relentless quest for a fulfilling life, personal freedom is in.
It’s no surprise, then, that one of the world’s most enduring bestsellers, the Bible, is all about living free. But the Scriptures offer the unique perspective that true freedom is found by obeying Almighty God, not by living according to our own desires.
The psalmist celebrated God’s Word as the key to personal liberty. Within the Lord’s commands he found guidance and strength to move freely through life. One translation of Psalm 119:32 says, “I run in the path of Your commands, for You have set my heart free.” Verse 45 proclaims, “I will walk at liberty, for I seek Your precepts.”
Imagine what it would be like to be released from your greatest anxiety and to run free. It can happen. If you would like to find freedom today, obey God’s Word and let Him set your heart free.
Be Blessed Pastor Eddie
Testing our thoughts and learning to take them captive is a huge part of the mental battle we have with our thoughts. So, when we can learn to do that as a regular practice, we will gain control over our thoughts.
But what if we chose to be more proactive with our thoughts in order to prevent reacting later on? There will still be thoughts that have to be tested and taken captive, of course. For we are not perfect. We can, however, choose to follow through with Paul’s exhortation in Colossians 3:2 NIV, which says, “Set your mind on things above, not on earthly things.” In setting our minds on “things above” we will have less thoughts that need testing and being taken captive.
When we set our minds, we are striving for something and directing our mind toward a certain thing. This verse says we shouldn’t set our minds on earthly things. Those “earthly things” usually distract us and cause our thoughts to keep us from God’s best.
There are plenty of things we see every day that are out of our control. But, much of what we see can be prevented. What we put in front of our eyes is a big deal. If you feel that you have too many toxic thoughts, what is it that could be causing them? Could it be things on TV, social media, or the news? It’s wise to analyze the things we are viewing daily and ask God to show us what would be a good thing to decrease or eliminate altogether.
Much like we need to watch what we put in front of our eyes, we also need to consider what is going into our ears. What we hear affects our thoughts just as much as what we see. Have you noticed what types of music, books, or podcasts possibly cause toxic thoughts in your mind? Are there things you need to include, not just remove, that will build you up and help create healthy thoughts instead?
Instead of focusing on and setting our sights on things that could cause toxic thoughts, let’s be proactively mindful of what we choose to put in front of us. When we choose things that honor God and keep us pure in heart, we will have less thoughts to test and take captive.