The more you focus on something, the more it becomes a pathway of thought, and a filter through which all information gets processed. If you wake up every day centered on something dark—fear, rejection, failure, bitterness—you give them power, and one or all of them will grow into a highway of negative expectation. That expectation affects every system in your body, every experience, and every relationship, including with God. Instead of being able to hear Him say how He wants to free and heal you, you become bitter because He isn’t doing what you want in your circumstances. You start looking for other ways to medicate your pain.
You can change your mind. You are not forever bound to this road, even if you’ve been on it for most of your life. God loves to help you renew your thinking from death to life. Helping you become all He sees you can become is His passion. Trust Jesus. Give Him every negative expectation, every day if you need to, until they have no power. The word “repentance” literally means to “change your thinking”. Religion makes repentance about changing behavior, instead renewing the heart and mind, and added to people’s burdens. God doesn’t want to conform you to a standard of behavior. He wants to transform you to be as righteous, peaceful, and joyful as He is.
This is no quick fix, not a pot-hole patch job. This is a discipline. But it’s so worth it. This is one of the most powerful and wonderful parts of your walk with God. It is a process, but it is meant to be a joyful one, like watching a child grow up. Each day you choose life-giving patterns of thought, you are not just changing your brain chemistry, you are shifting the reality in your head and heart from existing as an orphan to thriving as God’s son or daughter. With God, you’re creating an atmosphere around you that is life-giving as well, making it easier for others to be who they really are in God just because they’re near you.
Whether the negative thought you’re having is new, or you’re dealing with a dark thought process that’s deep and been with you a long time, don’t let it overwhelm you. Make a choice right now to give it to God. Physically make a motion with your hands, lifting them up to Him. Ask Him to replace those thoughts with His, to see yourself as He does, to see Him for who He wants to be for you, and to see everyone and everything in your life through His eyes.
His thoughts toward you are so powerful, so good, so full of life and energy and joy and peace, and they all feel like the real you. If you fail, you learn. Choose life again. And again. And again, until the new highway through your heart and mind leads straight to Him.
“Be made new in the spirit of your mind, and put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness” (Ephesians 4:23).
“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. Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me—put it into practice. And the God of peace will be with you” (Philippians 4:8 & 9).
“For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the Lord, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope” (Jeremiah 29:11).