4 Ways to Have Victory Over Your Thoughts
“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)
Picture this. You are standing in front of the mirror, but you are not alone. This day and every day, from the minute you wake up, you will be presented with various thoughts. Some are frequent visitors, and therefore become harder to turn away. But in some cases, certain thoughts in your mind need to know that they are not welcomed. What am I talking about? Well, sometimes when bad circumstances happen in our lives, we find ourselves becoming victim to negative thinking. Trust me, I have been there. During my teenage years, I battled depression, and even still today, am often tempted to give in to the same destructive thoughts that almost destroyed me.
So I speak from the heart when I say, we deserve so much better. This negative mindset may be familiar to you, but it doesn’t have to win. These thoughts are not truth, and you can’t afford to let them take up residence. In this article, I want to share with you how you can send these negative thoughts packing and out the door, so that you can make room for much better things.
Identity the Culprit
“The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.” (John 10:10)
Ever watch a movie and find yourself screaming at that girl who can’t see that her closest friend is actually her enemy? Okay, maybe not screaming. But you do become quite concerned. Especially as you see throughout the progression of the film, that this friend does not have her best interests at heart. Well I want you to see yourself as this girl right now. The voice in your head that tells you are no good, or that you will never amount to anything, is not your friend either. Maybe you grew up with an abusive parent, were bullied as a teen or had a critical teacher who never believed in you. Although, you have moved past these stages in your life, these voices still remain. You know why that is? Because we keep opening the door of our hearts and minds to them. Every time you hear them speak, and do nothing, you are allowing them to exert control in your life. Many times, the reason we do this is because we have become so comfortable with their presence that we don’t even recognize them and the harm they are inflicting. So today, I want you to ask God for the wisdom to be able to see how this is potentially wreaking havoc in your life.
Change Up Your Surroundings
“No weapon that is formed against thee shall prosper; and every tongue that shall rise against thee in judgment thou shalt condemn.” (Isaiah 54:17)
Sometimes, we are well on the way to recovery from a traumatic event but because of our current surroundings, we find ourselves stepping right back into the same cycle of hurt and pain. Before any true healing can take place though, you must first get rid of the things that are holding you back. It is clear that whatever we feed ourselves on a regular basis will grow. Evaluate your day-to-day activities and the environment you find yourself in. What are you listening to? What are you watching? Who are you talking to? What are you eating? Believe it or not, all of these can contribute to feelings of bitterness and negativity. So do whatever you need to in order to release yourself from the toxicity. If the solution is not so easily accessible, pray that the Lord will make a way of escape. (1 Corinthians 10:13)
Don’t Forget Your True Identity
“Since thou wast precious in my sight, thou hast been honourable, and I have loved thee: therefore will I give men for thee, and people for thy life.” (Isaiah 43:4)
You can tell a lot about a product, based on its price. You won’t find Gucci or Chanel items anywhere for less than a particular amount. With most material objects in life, there is a price. We have a price too. In fact, we are so valuable that it cost one man’s death. Yes, we are of such infinite worth that we are in fact priceless. When we fully understand our identity as in Christ, we become less likely to let in any strange thoughts that threaten to get in the way of our claims to royalty. The next time you feel low and discouraged remember that you are of more value than many diamonds…Believe it.
Focus on the Good
“Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.” (Philippians 4:8)
Behind every dark cloud is a ray of sunlight. No matter how dark your current circumstances, there is still much beauty to be found around you. We simply need to be intentional about seeking it out. At first, it may be hard to see past the dark clouds, but if you make it a daily habit, it may prove easier with time. Listen to positive, uplifting music that affirms your faith, and make it a habit to memorize Scripture. That way, when we are faced with negative thoughts and emotions, we can challenge it with uplifting words whether through song or vocal affirmation. Also, it’s one thing to chant affirmations, but it means nothing, unless we actually believe them. Let these words of life minister to your soul, and drown out all of those gloomy and self-hating thoughts. Here’s an example of this. If you keep hearing that you are worthless, and you have nothing to look forward to, speak aloud passages such as Jeremiah 29:11 and Psalm 139. You have much value, and lots to look forward to. Don’t give up hope.