After a very low experience, one can often look back and learn much from the moment. Remember, they say "hindsight is 20/20." You see, it doesn't take must of anything but a simple push to start a ball rolling downhill. The further downward it goes, the faster the pace becomes. That, my friend, is where I've found myself. At the bottom of the hill, the pile, or whatever you want to call it...flat on my back...in need of someone to help me back up. All because of THOUGHTS.
Here's a couple examples to begin with: My mind (see? thoughts!) views a table top set up with a path of perfectly spaced black-and-white dominoes. You know, all it takes is a slight push in the right direction on the very first one and...chain reaction...one by one, every domino will fall. Or perhaps, attempting to make a "house" out of a deck of cards. Same issue, one slight bump on the table and a chain reaction begins...one card falls, then two, until the house you were trying to create is leveled.
It's amazing how that applies to our thought processes too. One wayward thought, if not counter-acted, will lead to another, then another, and before we know it, we find ourselves in a stressed out or depressed state that could've been avoided. (Yes, I'm talking to me here! Lord, help me. I'm sure I'm not the only one though.)
True, it's easier said than done. It takes discipline and practice. Consider this: My New Year's goal is going to be to become better at putting down my imagination when it could be hazardous. So, on January 2nd, I have a little pesky thought come into my mind. I have to replace it with a positive thought. I do. OK, happy dance, I'm on a roll! "Going to get this whipped by February," I think to myself. Then on January 15th, I find myself thinking about the fact that all my children are soon going to be out of my home. (Some days I'm completely alright with that fact.) With that thought, I start thinking about how quiet the house will be with just me and Pops at home. Then, I wonder what we'll do to keep ourselves busy since we no longer have to fight with teenagers to keep their bathroom tidy. Well, what if they end up going off to college or entering the military? What will happen to them? Will they be able to make it? Have a I taught them enough to help them live a good moral and productive life? What if I haven't been all the mother I was supposed to be? What if...and before you know it, I find myself worrying about stuff that hasn't even happened and might never. Case closed.
See? It's ever so easy to let our minds run away in the wrong direction. Needless stress; harmful to our spiritual, physical and social lives. Yet, it's a tactic the enemy of our soul knows how to easily tempt with nonetheless. And most often, we're not alert enough to realize it's a trap. Oh, one more thing, not to mention, now that I've failed that New Year's resolution, I'm probably going to blow the other ones too. I'm such a failure! See? The domino effect rules!
The Lord knew what He was talking about when He told us to cast down imaginations and take every thought captive. He knew the impact just a single thought could make. It can become devastating to our lives if we don't replace it with a positive thought or a scripture from God's Word. Like I said, this is easier said than done, it takes discipline. And yes, this is truly one of my New Year's resolutions. I'm asking God even now before January 1st gets here, that He will help me overcome and conquer this issue in my life. I sit here right now with a pile of strewn dominoes scattered across my table.
I don't want to allow myself to be tempted in this area, I don't want to go through yet another depressing day when I don't have to. What about you? It's certainly avoidable and God will be our helper. And, no, I'm not going to get it all right the first time. Neither will you. I probably won't have it whipped by February either. I'm going to flounder and have to pick myself back up on occasion, but that's what overcoming is all about. Taking one step at a time and if you fall down, just getting back up and trying all over again. That's how we become disciplined. Practice makes perfect. Life could be so much more victorious if we get there in our minds first. Such a simple concept.
Let's all work together, reminding each other when necessary, to make this new year a fresh start and to keep our thoughts on the right track. As we begin 2016, let's focus more on the promises of God. Let's not get so low that we can't help ourselves or someone else up. Let's take one day at a time, one thought at a time and deal with each in a constructive way. Let's build a domino masterpiece! Together, we can do it. Now, hand me a domino~
Lord, help me to make better choices
in my mind. Help me to throw away thoughts
that will be destructive to my life. I want
to replace them with your promises.
Let me not give up when I fail. I want to
persevere and overcome.