No more Stinkin’ thinkin’…impossible? Depends on what you tend to think about.
What consumes your thoughts on a daily basis? Take a few moments to answer this question (it won’t take long), then reflect upon the following.
If your thoughts are continually focused on this world and all the “things “promising satisfaction, you are no doubt miserable! Take it from a person who has from time to time walked this dead-end path. Fortunately, I’ve learned a better way of thinking….that leads to a life that fully satisfies, and at times, splashes hope, joy, peace, and love onto those who happen across my path.
Note to self and friends: Learning and living this out is a daily surrender and dependence upon God.
Most recently, I found myself consumed with worry. Yes, the big W. Although I memorized Philippians 4:6 many years ago, I hadn’t been living it out, nor had I replaced my stinkin’ thinkin’ with thoughts that lead to hope, joy, peace, and love.
First, let’s look at one of my favorite passages of Scripture:
“Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:6-7).
– Worry about NOTHING
– Pray about EVERYTHING
– Thank God for ALL THINGS
Often we try to avoid or rid ourselves of thoughts that are unhealthy and or unholy with our own will power. This is not the best method. In fact, we will find ourselves powerless over thoughts that originate from the flesh, the world, and Satan, unless God’s power, through His Holy Spirit is at work in our lives.
Paul instructed the Church of Philippi, and future Christians, to fill their minds with the following:
“Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things. Whatever you have learned or received from me, or seen in me—put it into practice. And the God of peace will be with you” (Philippians 4:8-9).
I believe this is a great plan! Instead of going around with stinkin’ thinkin’, I’d much rather think upon such things that lead to peace.
Parents and grandparents, take this challenge.
No more Stinkin’ Thinkin’!
Discover the meaning of such things and then help your children/grandchildren catch you living out a thoughtful life in Christ, setting an example for them to follow.
Brief definitions (paraphrased from Webster Dictionary, etc.):
True — Agreeing with the facts, not with anything false. And I will go a little further than Webster: Not only agreeing with the facts, but living a life that substantiates all that is true. Qualities: steadfast, faithful, honest, just, truthful
Jesus said, “I am the true vine…” (John 15:1).
Jesus answered, “I am the way and thetruth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me” (John 14:6).
Noble — Having, showing, or coming from personal qualities that people admire (such as honesty, generosity, courage, etc.)
The Scripture that comes to mind: Proverbs 31:10 – The Wife of Noble Character
Right — Morally correct or acceptable; agreeing with the facts or truth; accurate or correct; speaking, acting, or judging in a way that agrees with the facts or truth. Sounds somewhat similar to the definition of True.
Pure — Not mixed with anything else; clean and not harmful in any way; being free from what vitiates, weakens, or pollutes; being free from everything that might make dirty, change, or lower the quality
Synonyms: spotless, stainless
“Who may ascend the mountain of the Lord? Who may stand in his holy place? The one who has clean hands and a pure heart, who does not trust in an idol or swear by a false god.They will receive blessing from the Lord and vindication from God their Savior. Such is the generation of those who seek him, who seek your face, God of Jacob” (Psalm 24:3-6).
Lovely – That what is attractive or beautiful especially in a graceful way; very good or likable; very pleasing; having a beautiful character
“But the Lord said to Samuel, ‘Do not consider his appearance or his height, for I have rejected him. The Lord does not look at the things people look at. People look at the outward appearance, but the Lord looksat the heart’” (1 Samuel 16:7).
Admirable — Deserving to be admired; deserving the highest esteem
Excellent — Very good; extremely good; that what is superior or first-class
“Why ask me about what is good?” Jesus replied. “There is only One who is good. But to answer your question–if you want to receive eternal life, keep the commandments” (Matthew 19:17 NLT).
Praiseworthy — Deserving praise; worthy of praise
God is worthy of all our praise.
“You are worthy, our Lord and God, to receive glory and honor and power, for you created all things, and by your will they were created and have their being” (Revelation 4:11).
Daily Challenge: Read and meditate on God’s Word (Holy Scripture).
“Keep this Book of the Law always on your lips; meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do everything written in it” (Joshua 1:8).
“Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect” (Romans 12:2 NLT).
Examine the historical research through the documentary, Monumental.
Monumental is the story of America’s beginnings. Presented, produced, and starring Kirk Cameron, the 90-minute true story follows this father of six across Europe and the U.S. as he seeks to discover America’s true “national treasure” – the people, places, and principles that made America the freest, most prosperous and generous nation the world has ever known.
Long regarded as “the land of opportunity,” there’s no question the tiny band of religious outcasts who founded this country hit upon a formula for success that went way beyond what they could have imagined. How else can you explain the fact that they established a nation that has become the best example of civil, economic and religious liberty the world has ever known?
What formula did they discover? What motivated them to come here in the first place? More importantly, how can we apply these same foundational truths today?
My husband and I recently watched Monumental on Netflix. We were extremely moved and encouraged by this historical documentary of our nation’s foundation, which was built on the undeniable courage and faith of those who we know as the pilgrims.
For the past several years, I’ve been troubled with the disconcerting rumors that our American history books are being rewritten, omitting the familiar and factual stories of the men and women who sacrificed their lives to preserve freedom and the Christian faith that our nation was founded on. Most recently, a friend of mine who is a public school principal shared here frustration and concern with me, over the same issue. She feels that her hands are tied when attempting to stand up for truth within the public education arena.
I also have a daughter and son-in-law who are currently struggling over their decision on how they will educate their three children. Their oldest is 5, so it is imperative they seek God’s wisdom; and through prayer and research, determine which route to take: home school, public school, or Christian school. I know many parents are struggling over this same decision.
Regardless of which choice our daughter and son-in-law make, it will necessitate a steadfast determination to fulfill and honor God’s authoritative command found specifically in Deuteronomy 6:4-9, to be the spiritual leaders of their children. Teaching their children God’s principles through the daily study of His Word must be their first priority. And if they choose public school, it will require a constant awareness of what their children are being taught.
Over the past several years, I've blogged about my greatest passion--intentionally passing my faith in Christ to the next generation, beginning with my family.
I've been married to Jeff forever! We love spending time with our three children, six grandchildren, two son-in-laws, and our dog, Pepper.
Jeff and I gratefully serve as Pastor and wife at St. Paul's Church of the Nazarene, Kansas City, MO; where people love God and each other.
Holding His Hand, my newest blog (2016) is dedicated to my mom, Audrey Lewis, who learned to trust in Jesus during her battle with cancer.