Keep Serving With Your Thoughts

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Some more ‘thoughts on thoughts‘ for you today :).

“The end of all things is at hand; therefore be self-controlled and sober-minded for the sake of your prayers.” 1 Peter 4:7

I find that if I’m reading questionable books, watching questionable movies, and listening to questionable conversations, it’s a lot harder to have a conversation with God. If I’m surrounded by questionableness, my thoughts are less likely to be holy.

Last time, I shared an idea for dealing with unwanted thoughts. This week, I’d like to give you some ideas for keeping them away in the first place.

I’ve still updating my Books page, so have a look for some more ideas. All the books on that page I have read, so I can personally recommend them.

Read C.S. Lewis or Edith Schaeffer instead of Stephanie Meyer or Dan Brown.

Watch Courageous instead of The Wolverine.

Listen to Kevin Swanson instead of One Direction.

Read the Bible!

Keep serving God with your thoughts!

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What do You do With Your Thoughts?

It happens all the time. In church. When you’re trying to have a conversation with God. You were really exploring some deep topics, and learning about God. And then They walked in. Distracted you. Led you astray. Totally entrapped you. It’s called “The Scourge of the Unhelpful Thoughts.”  Whether those thoughts were about your blog, your work, your studies, or your weekly meal plan, they shouldn’t be there. So you need to get rid of them. Fast.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

But how can that be accomplished? Exactly what do we need to do? Often, I find myself just ignoring them, and quickly getting back to what I was supposed to be thinking about. The problem is, they come back. Fast. So you re-focus, and get going again. And again. And again. And again. And again. And again.grass.thoughts.2

I think that the way we deal with unwanted thoughts can’t just be fast. It has to be deep. Instead of pushing my Unhelpful Thoughts away, instead of packing them up, instead of filing them away, I send them away.

I think of my thoughts as a little airport, complete with airplanes, baggage trolleys, and hangars. All my thoughts are there, being moved around, and used as necessary. Here is the important point which I would like you to consider.

Every thought which lands can either be sent straight away, or it can be utilized.

Our heads are full of thoughts we’ve thought over the years. And not all of them are useful. So next time you remember something, or a new thought comes flying down,  take a moment to deal with it. Reflect on its usefulness in serving God. Then, send it away or keep it.

This way, your thoughts can be pure and honouring to God as you serve Him.

Treasure God’s Name, Part Two

white flower“I will be glad and rejoice in You; I will sing praise to Your name, O Most High.” Psalm 9:2

“Oh Lord, our Lord, how excellent is your name in all the earth, who have set your glory above the heavens!” Psalm 8:1

“Blessed be the name of the Lord from this time forth and forevermore! From the rising of the sun to its going down the Lord’s name is to be praised. The Lord is high above all nations, His glory above the heavens.” Psalm 113:2-4

So, last week in Treasure God’s Name, Part One, I wrote about being wary of misusing God’s name. In contrast, His name must be viewed with reverence and awe.

A name is a reflection of a person’s character. God gave Himself the name ‘I AM’. This indicates His eternal being, He who was and is and will be, forever. God’s name is clearly to be regarded as precious. It is strong, sparkling, a precious stone. It is a privilege to use it. A privilege which must not be abused.

Use God’s name to worship Him. Read one of the many Psalms which extol the glories of the Lord.

Use God’s name with awe at His Majesty, and His creation.

Use God’s name with thankfulness that He has allowed us to speak to Him through His Spirit!

Finally, use it with joy. Because you are His child, you know Him, and He has forgiven you your sins!

Casting Our Cares on Him

file0001010718196One night I lay on my bed, with all the weight of this world‘s cares, frustrations, and worries lying heavily on my shoulders. As well as this life’s usual problems, I had a couple of larger issues to deal with.

But something changed-

I remembered “casting all your care upon Him, for He cares for you.”, a verse in 1 Peter 5. And instantly they were gone – cast upon my Saviour, with whom our yoke is easy, and our burden is light.

And then I thought-

What should I care about? I’ve already discovered that my desires should be for His second coming, and for His kingdom to be extended through all the earth. There needs to be something more, however. And while we should take every thought captive, some earthly things must be thought of while we are here on earth. We cannot live without thinking of that which we are doing. But the cares of our hearts should not overwhelm us, as in Mark 4:18-19. Ask yourself, would God care about this?

With our worries in the hands of our Saviour,

knowing that we belong to Him, and that He cares for us, we are free to serve Him!

What are Your Thoughts?

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This brief blog post is related to last week’s. I hope and pray that you have taken up my last challenge. Be warned: this one is even harder!

Imagine that temple or building again.
What if all your thoughts, were up there, every one of them written on your walls?
I don’t mean those sneaky ones that flash through and you swiftly squash. Let me rephrase this a little.
What do you mostly think about?
When this challenge was given me, I realised, to my shame, that my thoughts were primarily things like what how wedding dress would look, or exactly how my latest house design would go. This really hurt me, and almost instantly I began to spend my thoughts on the Lord.

For me, I didn’t have to consciously try to turn my thought around. Once I had been shown my error, God was swift in changing me. Now I strive to keep my mind pure.
Perhaps this, for you, will require more effort in the beginning, but persevere in serving God with your thoughts! The Lord is our dwelling-place, and we can rest in His mercies. Psalm 18, verses 30-31:
“As for God, His way is perfect;
The word of the Lord is proven;
He is a shield to all who trust in Him.
For who is God, except the Lord?
And who is a rock, except our God?