If you read my first post, you know that I have been inspired to use my time more wisely. Well, it turns out that once you run out of things to do and aren’t watching T.V., the only thing left to do is listen to yourself think. That can be dangerous.
It’s not like I’m not already self aware: I tend to pay close attention to, and even talk about my thoughts and feelings. But, knowing about old garbage that is there behind a closed door is very different from sitting in the middle of it. I have ignored my negative thoughts and closed the door on them time and time again by staying busy at work and distracted at home. Every once in a while I seem to have a handle on them, but then they burst in unexpectedly with an intensity that is surprising , even to me.
Then the guilt comes. “I should be so grateful. I have a wonderful, attentive husband. Our kids are doing well. I get to do something I love and get paid for it. What is wrong with me?!?!?!”
My negative thoughts (almost always about myself) are so consuming that it colors every other aspect of my life. It creates a distorted lens that I am compelled to look through even though I know there is a better one to choose.
“Be careful what you think, because thoughts run your life. ” Proverbs 4:23
“We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.” 2 Corinthians 10:5
Pretension: allegation of doubtful value.
If I keep letting these thoughts take over is it because I believe that they could be true? Yet I should know better. I know that God doesn’t think I’m hopeless….thats a pretension.
It’s just that all of us have a recording deeply etched in stone upon our childhood souls that will take much time and effort to sand away.
Paul proclaims to the Corinthian church that these thoughts may be taken captive….prisoners. Does this mean I have the power at my disposal to force these thoughts to become ones that are true and noble? Apparently so.
Do I feel that powerful? Absolutely not.
Am I an unworthy person because of this struggle? Maybe not…
Because Paul said a couple of chapters later, “That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong….”
It was love and a cause that compelled him. It wasn’t about him at all. It was “for Christ’s sake”.
So here I am at the conclusion that pulls me out of the fog and saves me from myself.
It’s the thought that opens my mind up once again to the beauty of the world, and it’s hungering need.
It’s not about me.