Monday, May 20, 2019

Our Thought-Life Determines Our Emotional Well-Being

Image may contain: ocean, sky, twilight, cloud, outdoor, water and nature
Image may contain: ocean, sky, twilight, cloud, outdoor, water and nature
(South Haven, Michigan)
What we ruminate on colors how we feel, how we see, how we experience. Our thought-life affects our emotional well-being.

This is a biblical idea, seen in verses like the following.

For as he thinks within himself, so he is. 
Proverbs 23:7

 Do not conform to the pattern of this world, 
but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. 
Romans 12:2 

 We take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ. 2 Corinthians 10:5 

 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. 
Philippians 4:8 

 Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things. Colossians 3:2

We can turn these verses into declarations, carry them with us, repeat them often.

What I think about myself is important.

I am not conforming to this world's values.

My mind is being renewed and transformed. 

I capture my thoughts and screen them 
before they capture me.

I think about myself as Christ thinks about me.

I meditate on true things.

I meditate on noble things.

I think about morally right things.

I ponder purity.

I am captivated by what is lovely.

I focus on admirable actions.

I desire excellence.

I praise God for what he is doing in me and others.

I set my mind on the things of God that 
transcend mere earthly existence.

J. P. Moreland writes:

"Without question, these and many other texts establish the importance to our overall well-being of how we train our minds and of what our minds habitually dwell on. As psychologists Edmund Bourne and Lorna Garano remind us: “The truth is that it’s what we say to ourselves [the self-talk of our thought life] in response to any particular situation that mainly determines our mood and feelings.”" 
Moreland, Finding Quiet, pp. 68-69

My two books are:

Leading the Presence-Driven Church

Praying: Reflections on 40 Years of Solitary Conversations with God.

I'm now working on...

Encounters with the Holy Spirit (I am co-editing this with Janice Trigg.)

Transformation: How God Changes the Human Heart 

Technology and Spiritual Formation

And, when all this settles, Linda and I intend on writing our book on Relationships.