It is so easy to become carried away by the cares of this world, to become darkened by evil, to become hardened by abuse or trauma. As a Christian, we have the wonderful promise of being freed from the affects of this wicked world.
If we seek Jesus sincerely, he will lead us on a path of healing. However, if we do not continually seek Jesus and keep focused on him, dark things can creep back in. That is why we must do things like “take captive every thought.”
This is going to be a short post. I just want to quickly share some encouragement for keeping your heart guarded and kept in Jesus. This is something I strive in, and I have in no way been perfected in this. I understand the struggle.
What I am learning is that we can replace most any negative though with Jesus.
Instead of worrying about what someone thinks of you, change that to: “what matters is what Jesus thinks of me.” Focus on doing the Lord’s will and ask Him to guide you in all things. We do not fear man, but if we are wise we will fear God.
Instead of dwelling on hurt that someone causes us, change those thoughts to: “Jesus suffered far worse, and he did not deserve it. He suffered for me. I have caused suffering, so I deserve worse than I get. Enduring patiently is good for my growth.”
Instead of thinking vengeful thoughts or being tempted to repay evil for evil, change those thoughts to: “vengeance belongs to the Lord. Do not be overcome with evil. Overcome evil with good.”
Instead of worrying about some financial trouble or other difficulty, change those thoughts to: “If the Lord cares for the birds of air and flowers of the field, how much more will he care for me if I put him first? I must have faith.”
Instead of getting caught up in vain thoughts of pride or self-importance, change those thoughts to: “I am not what matters. Jesus is what matters.”
Instead of focusing on the sins of others, change those thoughts to: “Jesus is the example of righteousness to follow. We all fall short sometimes, and so have I.”
Instead of fear focus on faith and trust in the Lord.
Instead of anger focus on the patience of Christ.
Instead of bitterness focus on the forgiveness of Jesus.
Instead of harsh judgement, seek the righteous judgment of the Lord with compassion and mercy.
Focus on the joys of thankfulness, praises to the Lord, humility, peace, patience, kindness, and all the promises of your salvation and fruits of the Spirit. Focus on what is true and good.
There are many things we can focus on. There are always going to be cares and difficulties, but when we focus on Jesus, our hearts are guarded against the dark things of this world!