We take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.
2 Corinthians 10:5b, NIV*
As I’ve been praying for grace to bring my thoughts under Christ’s authority, I’ve realized there’s more to this verse than avoiding sinful or tempting thoughts, as important as that is. There are at least three other types of thoughts that need to be kept in line:
Thoughts of self-focus, self-centredness or self-pity. When we’re preoccupied with our own opinions, choices and preferences, we can’t hear His.
Thoughts that ramble instead of being attuned to God’s leading. When we let our minds wander, even in safe places, we’ve lost focus and aren’t following our Shepherd.
Thoughts that yammer on and distract us from His voice. We need to still our thoughts and listen to God.
The other day at work I was tired and achy and tasked with moving boxes. Where ordinarily I’d be focused on muscle pain and “poor me,” I caught myself singing the same song over and over: “Hallelujah to My King.”
The Holy Spirit planted the song, but my moment of choice came when I recognized it: keep singing, or start complaining? For all the tests I (we all) fail, I’m glad this one I passed.
God our Maker, You know our weakness and how easily our thoughts slip away from the paths You’d like them to be in. Without Your Spirit to remind and guide us we don’t have a chance of keeping our thoughts obedient. Thank You for Your grace that helps us. Give us teachable minds and attitudes of obedient perseverance, and grow us in Your ways.
“Hallelujah to My King,” by Paul Baloche, is a good song for us all today.
*New International Version (NIV) Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.
Wonderful Janet. So clear. I too have been caught with a flu bug but needed to go out to dinner last night (stayed away from closeness to people) but I prayed for strength and joy. Had a good time and was in bed by 8pm. Today I am laying low but keeping in touch with others. Time to do that. Blessings to you,
Jan, I hope you’re feeling better soon! I think when we remember to ask God for what we need, the day goes better. It’s sad how quickly we forget to do that – almost makes it worth being tired or sick so we’ll realize we need to ask. He’s been very kind to me today and I’m appreciating it!