Quiet as it’s kept, chronic negative thinking, depression, anxiety, and similar disorders are on the rise all over the world. According to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America, 40 million adults in the U.S. are affected, which is nearly 20 percent of the population. Of that number, many are professing Christians.
The struggle against negative thinking is a battle for the mind. Apostle Paul tells believers what to think about: things that are true, noble, right, pure, lovely, admirable, excellent and praiseworthy (Philippians 4:8). Besides defining what thoughts should fill our minds, this passage of text implicitly teaches that we can control what we think about. When a negative thought comes, the thinker who has the mind of Christ (1 Corinthians 2:16) has the ability to push it out of the mind and replace it with godly thoughts. This takes practice, but with persistence, it gets easier. Christians must think about what they’re thinking about and not allow their minds, other people or circumstances to have free rein. In our spiritual warfare, we’ve been given the helmet of salvation—spiritual armor (Ephesians 6:17) for mental protection.
The helmet of salvation protects us spiritually and carnally from the powerful blows of doubt from the devil, people and circumstances. Without this piece of defensive equipment, we leave ourselves exposed on the spiritual and carnal battlefield.
Friends, as long we live in a fearful, stressful world, negative thoughts will come. We have the option of either stamping out those thoughts or nurturing them. The good news is, negative thoughts can be replaced with positive ones, and the more that godly substitution takes place, the more peace and joy we can experience.
So, don’t let the ugly in others kill the beauty in you!