I have been thinking, you have too.
We all have thoughts that rumble on through the grey matter. Some good and helpful, some not so good, and actually unhelpful.
Around and around the thought blender they go.
I know for me, some of my thoughts have a particular theme.
If I could box them and categorise them I would have multiple files of thoughts.
Fear thoughts, love thoughts, hope thoughts, despair thoughts, depression thoughts, anger thoughts, revenge thoughts, joy thoughts, worship thoughts. The filing cabinet of thoughts has many files.
Some of these thoughts can be powerfully dominant.
It is like they take over our lives, trying to dominate everything we do. They capture us and make us slaves to their existence.
If you want to see how they do this then check out this very cool video.
What do we do though when we have thoughts that we don’t like?
We have to take control of them. We have to actually get quite determined in our attitude towards them.
The Apostle Paul writes this.
Indeed, we live as human beings, but we do not wage war according to human standards; for the weapons of our warfare are not merely human, but they have divine power to destroy strongholds. We destroy arguments and every proud obstacle raised up against the knowledge of God, and we take every thought captive to obey Christ. 2 Corinthians 10:3-5
The language he uses is one of a battle going on. Power words such as weapons, warfare, power, destroy, strongholds, obstacles, captives are used.
Other translations put verse 5 in this way.
bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ AKJV
We capture their rebellious thoughts and teach them to obey Christ NLT
taking every thought captive in order to obey the Messiah. ISV
and we carry off every thought as if into slavery–into subjection to Christ Weymouth New Testament
fitting every loose thought and emotion and impulse into the structure of life shaped by Christ. The Message
If we dig just a little deeper into the original Greek language and look at the word used for ‘to take captive’ it is aichmalótizó meaning to take captive, subdue, ensnare. The root word, aichmalotos, means to lead captive as a prisoner of war and comes from aichme (a spear or sword).
Paul is saying that you are to take your thoughts captive at the point of a spear or sword.
What pictures form in your mind as you read this.
I have this picture of a thought floating through my brain and then I lasso the sucker (like something out of a Road Runner/ Wile E. Coyote cartoon) and nail it down.
‘Your not getting away, I’ve got you now, you varmint thought’
Ok, some have called me a little weird at times but it is a picture that tells me that I am in control of my thoughts and not the other way round. I want to be able to grab that thought, especially the negative ones, and capture, subdue and ensnare it.
How do I do this?
With a thought journal, I prayerfully write my thoughts down.
Some people collect teaspoons, I collect quotes. I hoard the wise thoughts of others such as this one from Dawson Trotman.
Thoughts disentangle themselves when they pass through your fingertips
I have found this to be so true. When I pick up a pen or pencil and write down my thoughts into a journal they seem to just become more solid, real, and accessible to scrutiny.
They have been captured.
What thoughts do you need to take captive. Grab your lasso and nail the suckers!
Image by By M Glasgow Creative Commons Flickr