Do you know anyone who is wise? How do they think? What are wise thoughts? What are foolish thoughts?
To break my negative thought cycle, I change it by practicing the Scripture to “rejoice always, pray without ceasing, and in everything give thanks for this is God’s will” (1 Thessalonians 5:16-18).
The girls in my county jail Bible study struggle to live successful lives. Most of their problems and troubles result from their wrong thoughts. The progression of thoughts to results are as follows. What we think affects our emotions. Our emotions control our behavior. And, our behavior directs the events of our lives.
One inmate received court papers concerning her children being adopted out. Her mother is now the foster parent for the children. The inmate was furious. Her angry thoughts generated a plan to hurt those whom she perceived as hurting her. This situation was a great opportunity to teach why we need to take our negative thoughts captive, and how to transform them so they don’t control our behavior.
What are the unseen controls that keep us in bondage? Do you feel hopeless to overcome the things that seem to control your decisions? …There are many unseen controls influencing us, such as our painful memories from offenses, and demonic activity influencing our thought life.
Can we be too heavenly minded and no earthly good? No, because sin begins in the mind from temptations to do wrong (see James 1:13-15). Our conscience sends a signal of discomfort when we are being tempted to do wrong. So, when we rebel against the good God says we should do and give in to the temptations, that is sin. Sin corrupts our heart and messes up our lives. So, to be victorious over temptations, keep your mind on what pleases God instead of what pleases your self-centered desires.
Self-control begins in your mind. Your mind determines what you think, perceive, feel, and believe, which influences your decisions and behaviors. Your mind stores memories of the past and present that controls your thoughts and feelings. So, to be self-controlled we must transform our minds.