Capture Your Thoughts

A couple of weeks ago, I blogged in Living My Advice that I had a biopsy and was awaiting the results. I am happy to report the biopsy on the lump in my throat is benign. Whew! Relief. Now, for the other tests, I have yet to take. Hopefully, I will be able to get them done before the end of the year.

Procrastination is my middle name. I know it’s a long name, and it took me a while to learn to spell it. Haha! I take my time about things. It’s my nature. Or maybe I’m just lazy. Just being real here. I wait to make appointments, dreading them, or the outcome. I drag my feet to even get in the shower some days. I think I am just tired of living in pain all the time. Sometimes, life stinks.

But then, there’s Jesus. Sigh. He lifts me up, better than a cup of my favorite foo-foo coffee. He fills me up better than my favorite meal. He gives me rest, better than any night’s sleep. He comforts me better than my coziest blankie and fuzzy slippers. He protects me better than my home alarm system. He fills my troubled soul with songs in the night. He anchors me to His side when storm clouds gather. He calms my spirit when my world spins out of control.

Life is too short to worry it away. Fretting never changed a thing for the better. Anxiety makes my stomach burn, my heart race, my mind scenario build, and my chest hurt. So why go there? I’m not saying I never do. But things changed for me a few years ago. I lived in a constant, vicious cycle of worry and anxiety. I didn’t want to upset anyone; I wanted the approval of everyone. I wanted everyone to like me. Frankly, I still do. But I let it run my life. I no longer let that happen.

Our late pastor’s wife, Laura, taught a valuable lesson on capturing our thoughts and making them obedient to God’s Word. When we think about something we shouldn’t or bad thoughts cross our minds, or we begin worrying, we need to get our minds off those things. It may look silly, but this worked. She suggested that we use our hands to grab that thought and throw it away. But that’s not enough; we need to replace that thought with the Word of God. That advice changed my life. It was a long process. It took several months to retrain my mind, but it worked. I think differently now. The following passage has been a favorite from my youth but has meant much more to me since I have learned from Laura’s sage advice.

Rejoice in the Lord always. Again I will say rejoice! Let your gentleness be evident to all; the Lord is near. Do not be anxious about anything but in everything with thanksgiving, by prayer and petition, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Jesus Christ. Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, lovely or pure, whatever is admirable–if anything is excellent or praiseworthy–think on these things. Philippians 4:4-8

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