“You will keep in perfect peace all who trust in You, all whose thoughts are fixed on You!” – Isaiah 26:3 –

Ever wonder why thoughts appear seemingly out of nowhere? A thought comes our way… and our mind follows after it. Thoughts can lead us down paths of positivity or negativity. Both will impact our physical, mental and spiritual selves. For whatever occupies your mind controls your life.

Do positive thoughts dominate… causing you to feel peaceful, calm, untroubled? When we allow the peace of Christ to fill our hearts, we view life from His perspective with joy and hope. His Spirit influences our thoughts. We see the best in people and circumstances. We recognize and are thankful for our many blessings.

Or do negative thoughts prevail… causing you to feel unsettled, anxious, in turmoil? When we view life from a worldly perspective, we start believing the worst. Thoughts arise that raise doubts… question decisions… stir up dissension. These thoughts clamor for our attention, disturb our well-being and steal our peace.

“Throughout the day, we have the choice to have faith that God is in control, meaning all that happens is for my greater good, or we can go around in fear, worried and negative, expecting the worst.” – Rev. J. Martin, Author

Are you finding your thoughts wandering back to Your past with sorrow, bitterness or regret? Ask yourself… can I change the past? Can I change whatever is welling up negative thoughts from my past? If there is some way, then make any amends.

Often, we just need to leave the negatives from our past behind. Remember, Jesus carries our past. We leave it all with our Savior and refuse to let our thoughts travel there any longer. Allow His Spirit to help you recollect the positive, joyful and blessed memories instead.

Are you discovering your thoughts getting mired in the present with worry, distress or fear? Ask yourself… can I affect the present? Can I affect whatever is causing negative thoughts about the present? If the Holy Spirit leads you to take action… to make a change… to alter your present circumstances in some way, then follow that path.

Our worrisome, unsettling thoughts will not help or affect the present. We need to stop our minds from roaming there. Remember, Jesus oversees our present. He sovereignly manages every detail of our lives. Allow Him to rule… to reign as Lord and King of your life.

Are your thoughts meandering into the future with uncertainty or apprehension? Ask yourself… can I control the future? Can I control whatever is creating negative thoughts about my future? If you are led by the Spirit to prepare in some way for what lies ahead, then pursue that road.

No amount of anxious or distressing thoughts can change our future. We need to realize the futility of that type of thinking. Remember, Jesus rules our future. He is our Almighty King who knows what our future holds. Place your absolute trust in Him alone.

“Whatever we focus our attention on is what will dominate our thoughts (Proverbs 23:7). If our thoughts are dominated by the things of this world, then we are going to get worldly results in our lives. We need to focus on God to get godly results.” – Andrew Wommack

Are you carrying the burdens of others? Are your thoughts focused there? When we care so much about what others are going through, we often take on their problems as our own… often to our own detriment. Jesus is our Burden Bearer. He asks us to cast our cares upon Him. He is the One strong enough to carry all for us. We need to encourage others to give their burdens to Him.

Are you fighting others’ battles? Are your thoughts centered there? Sometimes we expend our energy, agitate our emotions and disrupt our lives fighting battles that are not ours to fight. Jesus is our Warrior. He is the One powerful enough to fight our battles for us. We need to exhort others to let Him contend for them. For the battle is the Lord’s. In Him we have the victory.

“Fix your thoughts on Jesus, whom we acknowledge as our Apostle and High Priest.” – Hebrews 3:1

Pursuing negative, unproductive trains of thought lead us away from Christ. Stressful, troubling, fearful thoughts rob us of the peace that He longs to give us. When our minds are captured by these thoughts, we find it difficult to break free.

How do we escape from a negative pattern of thinking?

   When you become aware of your thoughts heading in the wrong direction, rein them in and give them over to Jesus

   Learn to recognize rogue, negative thoughts and take them captive to Christ – Refuse to think on them, dwell on them or believe them any longer

   Think thoughts that are positive, healthy… productive for God’s kingdom and for your good

   Say aloud key scriptures that remind you of who you are in Christ

⇒   Guard what you allow into your mind… what you read, listen to or view

   Learn to find joy in life – See the good in people and life’s events

⇒   Find things to do that you enjoy, things that absorb your thoughts, things that require you to think and plan… an enjoyable place for your thoughts to go

“Search me, God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. See if there is any offensive way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.” – Psalm 139:23-24

Because we have the Spirit of Christ, we have the mind of Christ. As we surrender our thoughts to Him, He will ease our mind’s burdens and lift our spirits. He will pull us out of the miry depths of our negative, burdensome thoughts and instill in us His abiding, unending, perfect peace.