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Sunday, August 20, 2017

Changing my life...



What we think most about has the power to mold who we become.

It has power to affect how we feel, the way we view the world, how we respond to others. It also influences the environment around us by the very mood we carry into each moment of every day. 

When our mind overflows with the harsh injustices and ungodliness which the world increasingly throws in our face, it is easy to allow those seeds of anger and despair to take root in our mind and over time grow into weeds which threaten to blind our clarity and unbalance the goodness right in front of us. 

The more we allow negativity and despair to dominate our reading, viewing, thoughts and conversations, the darker the atmosphere we will carry around us, and the less others will want to spend time in our company. That kind of influence filling our heart and mind will almost surely, over time, rob us of living a joyful and abundant life in Jesus.

Recently I was reading 2 Corinthians and could not get past these words -
"...bringing every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ..."

I felt as though the message had lifted itself off the page of my Bible and impressed itself upon my heart, like a budding bloom within a flower press being preserved for life so I'd never forget.

Then I had a vision, fleeting, but quite real and profound. In the vision a bird flew past me and very quickly I reached out my hand and caught it. I sensed the Lord speaking into my heart, instructing me to do this with every negative thought. 

My nature is one where if I'm around too many people who are negative, mean or disrespectful I can become quite sad and open the door to depression. This in turn can lead my mind along dark and dangerous roads, sometimes even to thoughts of suicide. 

When the Lord gave me this vision and the understanding of it, a weight lifted off my heart. In fact it was as though He'd given me a weapon - or should I say, He showed me a weapon I'd always had but never knew about, a weapon to use against those thoughts whenever they return.

The key part of this verse (for me) is "to the obedience of Christ" because it's not just about taking those negative thoughts captive, but comparing them to Bible promises and truths, to what Jesus teaches and to what I know of His character through study of the Bible. 

This was life changing for me, it has altered my personality for the better and given me a holy tool to use whenever my mind wanders where it should not. And it's not just sad or depressing thoughts I must take into captivity. 

I know God is asking me to capture every thought that goes against the nature of Jesus - like envy, greed, disrespect, pride, superiority, and the list goes on. 

The more I have allowed the Holy Spirit to help me recognise my wrong thoughts, the easier it is becoming to reach out and grab those thoughts, to bring them into captivity and compare them to the character of Jesus. From there I can choose to adjust my attitude so that it lines up with full obedience to Christ. 

Friends, I am not perfect, and this life-giving lesson is relatively new to me, but abiding in it has brought me a new found peace and confidence in God's unseen plans for my life, and His plans for what happens this side of heaven.

Only God Himself can show me a portion of one verse, a fleeting vision and the understanding impressed upon my heart all in the space of a minute or less - and with it, change my life for the better. 

Only God.

What is He desiring to teach you today? 
Open the Bible, pray, read, and see what happens.
Our Father in heaven gives wisdom to all who ask.

Your sister in Christ,



17 comments:

Baa. xxx said...

Only God! He is so good in teaching us and bringing us closer to Him. Bless!

Kezzie said...

I don't know what life would be like if we didn't have a God who reaches out to us in our moments of desperation and feeling down. Glad to hear He met you, Jenny, and gave you a strategy that lifted you and that you can use again!
I felt that I had a new insight into the fact that in Jesus I am righteous and in those moment when I feel sorrow for failing to take steps of faith to overcome a long standing issue I will need to remind myself that I can only stand because God sees me through the veil of Jesus'righteousness and not my own-which is non-existent.

Blessings

Kerrie

Allie-oops Designs said...

Wow Jenny-girl I love this! I love that verse too, your insights are something I'll carry with me from now on. I always pictured myself putting a chain around my thoughts and handing them over to Jesus...but I love the bird. Too often those negative thoughts fly right from my mind into my mouth, how much better to catch them on the wing and stop them. Love you love you my precious sister in Christ!

Anonymous said...

Like you, I am also prone to depression, that dark cloud that sucks out all the joy and light in life. It helps so much to be careful who we spend time with and to monitor our thoughts to avoid the slide into this darkness. I've so glad you are finding your own way to keep watch over your life and the ways to stay positive. You are such a creative, giving person, I hope you realize the joy you bring to so many of us! My wish is that today for you will be filled with joy and light. - Diane from Minnesota

Little Penpen said...

You have a way of describing my own feelings so well. Thank you Jenny, and thank you for Biblical counseling and encouragement.

Buttonchief7 said...

How encouraging a message to all who will accept it. The hateful, evil things happening in our country are so upsetting. But we all need to know that God is in control.We have to keep living for Him, praying for our leaders and for evil to be diminished.

Paula A. said...

We can't stop a bird from flying over our heads. But we can stop him from making a nest in our hair! The battle always starts in our minds! Always be aware of where your thoughts are coming from. Thanks Jenny for your encouraging words. May we take them to heart. God bless

Debby said...

Jenny, once again you have so eloguently captured in words a lesson God has recently shown me as well. Although we are literally a hemisphere away, I share a kindred spirit with you as a sister in Christ.

Createology said...

Sweet Jenny I am reading your post on my Sunday and knowing I do not attend church nor read my bible I own, I am so thankful for you and your wise words of wisdom. You bring a sensible clarity to life's challenges many of us face in our lives. Blessings and Thank You so very much. <3

Sheilaanne said...

Jenny. Thank you so much for being so open to us. When you wrote about the little bird, my heart leaped, because the day I buried my husband, (outdoors) as the speaker was talking, a little bird flew right across my eyes. At the time, it brought so much comfort. I knew it was from God. God illustrated a new meaning to you through this same tiny bird. I will forever remember your story and put it to use in my own life. Thank you and so much love to you, Sheila

Cyndi said...

Jenny, you have spoke truth. Sometimes it means letting go of toxic relationships because the person's negative thoughts, words and character do not match what we know to be true in God's word and His character. Well said my friend, we are daughters of the King and as such we have the right to sit at His table and claim the promises he has for us.

Blessings to you dear sister in the Lord, Cyndi

desertskyquilts said...

Amen and amen! I stopped regular/cable TV service so I don't hear so much ugliness and negativity. It's been six years, and I don't miss it! I listen to classical music and things like Mormon Tabernacle Choir, and not modern music. It helps me stay positive. I'm not perfected in this yet, but I'm also trying to be proactive - doing service for others to keep out of my own worries, for instance. I am so glad you wrote this post today. It's reaffirming and positive and wonderful! Thank you.

Debbie White said...

Jenny, you can't begin to know what a blessing this post has been to me! I have two particular people in mind that I want to share this with in hopes that it will bless them as much as it has me. Thank you for opening your heart with us and God bless you in all you do! Please continue to share your thoughts and inspirations with us. Debbie in West Virginia USA

Gayle Miller said...

I love what you share. It is refreshing. I like your analogy of the bird! I also this week have reminded myself that I need to not focus on all of the negativity as I was shifting into despair and fear. It was almost like deep down there is a belief that if I let go of those fears and feelings and thoughts that somehow I am giving in to the evil and that my hanging on to them somehow we has power to change things. That is poison to our souls. As you said I need to take the thoughts captive and put them to obedience to Christ. Hanging on to the anger won't change anything and is harmful to my soul and others and isn't Christlike. On Sunday we sang a worship song that included a section of singing "It is well with my soul" and it brought me to tears as I was so far from that. I realized that is wasn't well with my soul and I need to be able to sing that despite what is going on in the world around me. Our peace isn't connected to what is going on around us but from tapping into Christ's love and trusting him. My trust is in Christ not my country! "It is well with my soul"!

C Reeder PhxAz said...

Grateful as always for your words of wisdom. Thank you as well for continued blog posts. I check daily and read your posts often, many times printing them out and pasting them in my daily written journal.

Corinne76 said...

♥ Merci !

Tammy said...

Thank you for always being a friend. I love to read your posts. They bring me so much insight into my own life. Jenny have you ever thought about writing a book of wisdom for Christian women. You would sell many books...Think about it my friend... You explain things like no other. Love you always my Aussie friend. May your heart always be filled with happiness and your mind with clarity.