Tuesday, October 7, 2014

The First C of Thinking

Reminder: Bible Study is tonight-I can't wait to sit at the foot of Christ with you as we dive into this. If you are in Midland and want to attend, shoot me an email for more info at coffeeatthecross@gmail.com

How often do you experience reacting without ever really thinking about it? Probably more times than you are aware of, right? Maybe even more than you would like to admit. Me too!

Do you know Jesus never had that problem? Everything Jesus did, He thought about the effects. Everything God did in Genesis, was thought about, and nothing was forgotten, overlooked, or stressed over.

God is a God of detail. Not only in what He does or how He does it, but why He does it.

So if God is a God of detail, and the Creator of us, don't you "think" He can help us gain control of our thinking, feeling, and decision making? I sure do.

Today, we are going to look at our 1st C of thinking, remember there are 4 C's of thinking.

1. Controlled
2. Caring
3. Conniving
4. Careless

But before we do, I want to bring greater attention to just how detailed God really is. See, Jesus knew we would struggle with our thoughts, feelings and decision making. He knew the very root, the specifics and the whys of our struggles, thus He put passage after passage in His Word to help us.

Let's look at one specific passage that will play an important role in claiming victory over our thoughts, which will then govern our feelings, and produce godly decision making.

Philippians 4:8, do you know this verse? If not, I pray after today, that changes and it becomes one of your go to verses. I have seen this verse change lives of women. I have seen this verse set women free, give them hope, and help them reclaim who they are in Christ.

This verse co insides with Hebrews 12:1-2, which says, "Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a huge crowd of witnesses to the life of faith, let us strip off every weight that slows us down, especially the sin that so easily hinders our progress. And let us run with endurance the race that God has set before us. We do this by keeping our eyes on Jesus, on whom our faith depends from start to finish." 

Let me show you why. If we our going to allow the Holy Spirit to realign our minds, we also have to allow Him to remove the junk. It's a makeover ladies, a spiritual makeover, and before a makeover can begin, we have to be willing to allow change to take place.

Okay, let's put some application to this.

Remember our pattern?

The Mind is the control center. Within the control center there are three key parts.

1. Thoughts
2. Feelings
3. Decision Making

Each part plays a significant role in our spiritual lives and each part is to function according to their position and role. When our thoughts are activated the gears begin to turn, when the gears turn they flow in a God ordained way, producing God ordained outcomes.

So let's get or thought gear going.

Philippians 4:8 is what will fuel the gears, Hebrews 12:1-2 is what keeps them oiled, and Romans 12:2 is what keeps them running in the right direction.

Philippians 4:8 says, "Fix your thoughts on what is true and honorable and right. Think about things that are pure and lovely and admirable. Think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise. Keep putting into practice all you learned from me and heard from me and saw me doing, and the God of peace will be with you." 

God being a God of detail, gives us a very detailed list to help us in our thought life. He gives us 8 steps to focus our thinking on. As we walk through the 4 C's of thinking we will use these 8 steps with every verse.

1. Think on what is true
2. Think on what is honorable
3. Think on what is right
4. Think on what is pure
5. Think on what is lovely
6. Think on what is admirable
7. Think on what is excellent
8. Think on what is worthy of praise

Our first C of thinking is controlled thinking. What does the word controlled mean?

Well to control means to hold in check; curb. To be controlled means to have power to influence people's behavior or course of events.

This is where Romans 12:2 comes in. To have control of our thoughts, we must first be willing to relinquish control and be controlled by Christ.

For some reason, this is the biggest struggle for humans. The ability to control things has become an addiction, a high and when we lose control, chaos of all kinds erupts. Tempers fly, behaviors change, moods change, feelings run rampant, words become daggers, and Satan throws a party.

Satan wants you to crave control, he wants you to be so twisted in your thoughts, that thinking straight seems awkward, even wrong. He wants to come in and throw a wrench in your gears, making them run out of order and mess up. Satan will do whatever he can to get your feelings and thoughts out of whack. He knows when you put your feelings before your thoughts, he has an easier way of getting in and gaining control.

From the beginning, Satan wanted God's power. He wanted to be on the same level as God, but as we all know from Scripture that didn't happen, nor will it ever happen. God cast him out of heaven so quick and from that day on Satan has been on a mission to take dominion ship. He will exhaust every avenue and use every helper he can to destroy you, and he begins in your thought life and in your feelings. But take hope sweet one, Jesus won, and us who are in Him, win too.

The Victory is ours. Yes, the battle is still alive, and will be until Christ returns, so lets keep fighting the fight until then. Let's keep breaking down every stronghold and placing our thoughts captive under the microscope of God's word.

Step 1 in controlling our thinking.

-Give up control

Step 2-

-Give God the reins

Step 3-

 -Take your thoughts captive-today, I want you to take one thought you struggle with the most.

Write it down and put a box around it.

Then, I want you to take your 8 steps above and place that thought under examination.

Here is how.

Let's take the thought "I'm not good enough."

Imagine that thought in a box.

Under that box, I am going to write out all 8 steps. Like this.

1. Is this thought true?

2. Is this thought honorable?

3. Is this thought right?

4. Is this thought pure?

5. Is this thought lovely?

6. Is this thought admirable?

7. Is this thought excellent?

8. Is this thought worthy of praise?

After I have wrote those out I am going to go back and answer them with the promises of God.

I will do the first one with you, then I want you to do the rest on your own. This takes studying and searching the Word, and the purpose of doing so is to remove your eyes and thoughts of of self and place them on the truth and promises of God.

1. Is this thought, "I'm not good enough." true? No, I am a child of God created in His image. I was created with purpose and for God's glory. And there is no one good. Romans 3: 9-10 says, "Well then, are we Jews better than others? No, not at all, for we have already shown that all people, whether Jews or Gentiles, are under the power of sin. As the Scriptures say, 'No one is good-not even one."

Romans 12:3-5 "As God's messenger, I give you each of you this warning; Be honest in your estimate of yourselves, measuring your value by how much faith God has given you. Just as our bodies have many parts and each part has a special function, so it is with Christ's body. We are all parts of his body, and each of us has different work to do. And since we are all one body in Christ, we belong to each other, and each of us needs all the others." 

     The Truth: I am a valuable part of the Body of Christ.

2 Corinthians 10:12-"Oh, don't worry; I wouldn't dare say that I am as wonderful as these other men who tell you how important they are! But they are only comparing themselves with each other, and measuring themselves by themselves. What foolishness!" 

Satan's Lie: "You are not good enough, look at them, they are more successful, they are better than you." 

    -Satan wants you to compare yourself to man, but man is sinful, here today and gone tomorrow. 

Truth: I need to only compare myself to God. God's opinion and evaluation of me is far greater than the opinion of man. I am a valuable part of the Body of Christ. I have been given a specific gift that is important and beneficial to Christ. God created me to be me and I will find joy in the works of His hands.

Y'all that is just step 1 of the 8. I promise by the time you finish 8, probably even just 1, your thoughts will already be completely different.

Remember, it's what God's Word says and it's His truth and thoughts about you that matter most!

I hope today, Jesus gives you time to take at least one thought captive and place it under the microscope of these 8 steps.

May you be transformed by the renewing of your mind and the love of God as He transforms the way you think.

Be blessed sweet ones.