God, my thoughts are out of control, help (3 ways to take control of thoughts)
Do you ever feel like your thoughts are out of control? Like someone or something else is operating your brain but you’re being held responsible for the consequences?
Have you ever had one of those dreaded closets that became one big junk drawer? Perhaps you’ve got some clothes, a few pairs of shoes, a bunch of coats, and everything else miscellaneous thrown into this closet. Maybe yours is so bad that people need to duck when the door is opened.
If you have one of these closets you know how overwhelming it can be. There’s stuff everywhere. you don’t’ want it to look that way, but you don’t even know where to begin. And besides,, who’s got time.
That’s how it can feel with our thoughts. We are bombarded and overstimulated both externally and internally.
Maybe your out-of-control thoughts contribute to intense insecurity or overwhelming temptation or terrible anxiety.
Whatever it is, it is likely robbing you of peace and purpose and you wish God would just take it away.
What if I told you that your mind is YOUR battleground and God has given you all the weapons you need to take it back?
In fact, nowhere in scripture does it say that God will take over our thoughts but it does give us detailed, specific instructions on how WE can.
So let’s think of our thoughts like that out of control closet and see what the Bible says about how to regain control.
1. Round Up.
When starting to organize and take control of that closet, the first step is to do a closet dump. Take everything out and start to organize it. Hats in one pile, shoes in another, you get the picture. The same thing needs to happen with your thoughts. When your thoughts are allowed to have free reign in the dark closets of your mind, they will not improve. In fact, like the closet, over time, it gets worse. 2 Corinthians 10:5 reminds us to Take every thought captive and make it obedient to Christ. So take your thoughts like you would your closet contents and start organizing them. Begin by journaling (even if it’s just short bullet points) on the thoughts that are bombarding you. When you’re finished with your brain dump, you can begin to organize them into categories. You’ll be surprised to see that there really are only a few categories that they all fall into therefore making them much easier to deal with.
Once you have rounded up all your thoughts, now it’s time to question them. When you organize your closet, you will first-round up all the items and then begin to go through each of them and question “Do I use this?” “Is this needed?” Sometimes simple questions can help you decide what to keep and what to discard but what about those more difficult items. Perhaps it was a pair of boots that you haven’t worn in 5 years but they cost you $300. You may think to yourself “I can’t just get rid of them, can I?” In those tougher cases, you would do well to ask questions like “Would I buy this item today and wear it?” and you guessed it if the answer is “NO” then it’s time to let it go.
Similar questions need to be asked of your thoughts. Questions like “Where are you coming from?” “What is your purpose for my life?” can determine whether that thought needs can stay (and be dealt with) or simply has to go.
There will be some thoughts that you can easily recognize the need to go, but others perhaps there’s some truth to them so you’re not sure. What do you do in that case? You ask deeper questions. “If given a choice, would I WANT to think this?” If the statement is true that our thoughts make us who we are, ask “Do I want to be this person?”
In that questioning, you will get more clear answers. Your answers will begin to tell you which thoughts can stay, which can go and which you need help working through.
Once you have your closet purged and piled you can now begin the exciting process of renovating. If you’ve ever renovated or reorganized a closet, you know how renewing it can feel. You get to decide where you want everything to go and what you want it to look like. My friend, you have the same power and control over your thoughts. YOU can determine what you want to think about. If you’re saying, “I don’t know where to begin, what do I think about”. Start with Philippians 4:8 Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.”
Remember how you organized that closet into neat sections? You wouldn’t think of just throwing anything in there again, would you? No, you have specific items that you will allow in that closet. If someone came over and tried to store their lawnmower in your closet, you’d say NO. Same thing with our thoughts. You get to decide what comes into your mind and what doesn’t. If you don’t want anything outside of Phil 4:8 cluttering your closet then be sure that no one, including you, clutters the closet of your mind again.
My friend, the bad news is that God will not take control of your thoughts, but the good news is that he has given us all we need to fight this battle.
I pray that you will find the patience and persistence to deal with the chaos in your mind and allow God to walk with you as you renew your mind and thus transform your life.
Question: What do you do to control your thoughts?
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