Take Every Thought Captive

2 Corinthians 10:5 and we take every thought captive to make it obey Christ.

I don’t know if you’ve noticed but we become much like our thoughts. The bible tells us in Proverbs 23:7 that as a man thinks, so is he.
What we think about has an effect on everything we do including our behavior. We can’t always control what comes to our mind but we can control what we allow to stay in it or what we dwell on.
For example, if you are happy and looking forward to something, it pretty much drives the course of your day. You dwell on it and it shows in your attitude and behavior because a lot of times it’s all you talk about with anyone who would listen. You are so excited and can’t wait to finish whatever you’re doing because you want to get to that thing you keep thinking about.
Well it works the same way in reverse. When we dwell on or allow negative, fearful, hateful or depressing thoughts to stay in our minds, soon enough our attitude and behavior shifts towards those thoughts. We begin to feel sad, depressed, fearful, angry, hateful etc. and pretty much have a ‘bad’ day.
The bible tells us to be transformed by renewing our minds (Romans 12:2). So what is the definition of renew? In simple terms it is to make new or refresh. We have to refresh our thoughts, start over, think new thoughts.
Now, this isn’t easy. Renewal is a continual process and it does not come naturally. It takes a lot of self-awareness, dedication, and commitment to practice it daily, all the time.
I haven’t mastered this yet and I’m no expert but I’ll give a practical example. When a thought comes to my mind about all of the bad things that can happen while my daughter is in college far away from me, I literally have to stop myself or interrupt the thoughts and shift my focus to something else.
I make a conscious effort to renew my mind and instead of thinking how everything can go wrong, I think of how everything can go right. I tell myself all of the good and positive things that can happen while she is away and remember what the bible says about training up a child in the way they should go. Quickly God puts in my heart that I cannot play God in her life. If I trust Him with all parts of me, she is included and He will take care of her too.
By replacing the worrisome thoughts in my mind with the truth of God’s Word and His promises, is how I gain control over what I think about (or take my thoughts captive). I make my thoughts obey Christ by reminding myself of all the reasons why I cannot dwell on the negative and how much better it is to focus on the positive or all good things (Philippians 4:8).
With God’s help, we all have the ability to regain control over our thoughts. The problem is that a lot of us tend to worry so much about how we look and act around others that we put more focus and effort on outward behavior, forgetting that God looks at our hearts, not outward appearances and pretenses.
My prayer for all of us is that we allow God’s inner work to take place in our lives and learn to put more effort into disciplining our thought life. Soon enough our behaviors and outward appearances will catch up.
May we learn to bring every thought into captivity using the weapons of our warfare. May we arm ourselves with the knowledge of God’s Word by reading and praying to understand it and asking the power of the Holy Spirit to help us with the trials of life in order that we become a little more like Him everyday.
Be encouraged!
Philippians 4:8
Finally, believers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable and worthy of respect, whatever is right and confirmed by God’s word, whatever is pure and wholesome, whatever is lovely and brings peace, whatever is admirable and of good repute; if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think continually on these things [center your mind on them, and implant them in your heart].