We moved into our house a few years ago and the former residents had completely different taste in landscaping than we do. They liked traditional flowers and foliage, like white daisies, tall grasses, and hostas. We prefer wild, colorful, and tropical looking plants, like huge hibiscus, multi-colored clematis, and vibrant tiger lilies.
We replanted everything, but last year, some sort of white vining flower mystically appeared in our front bed, a remnant of owners’ past. It seemed benign and was lovely enough, so I let it go.
And. It. WENT.
That thing tried to take over the whole flower bed, choking the hibiscus and peonies and covering our whole fence so you couldn’t even see the pickets though the greenery. I cut it back at the end of the season, but unfortunately, I didn’t take the time to pull up the roots.
Underestimating that insidious plant it was a huge mistake! This year, the thing is trying to take over the whole world. It’s even sprouting up between the bricks in our sidewalk! I wish I would have recognized it for the invasive beast it was when I first laid eyes on it and pulled it out by the roots before it spread. Instead, I was lulled into complacency by its deceptive beauty and now we’re paying for it.
2 Corinthians 10:5 NIV – We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.
Unfortunately, our thoughts are like that vine. Focusing on the wrong things – anger, hurt, bitterness, perceived injustices, and any manner of butt hurts can seem justifiable, or even good, at first. Satisfying even. Nay – DELICIOUS!
When we let them go unchecked and give them time to take root, those notions grab hold of us, eventually infiltrating our minds. They turn into beliefs and wrap themselves around our words, actions, and relationships, like bad weeds. They strangle out the good and the beautiful, threaten to disrupt our very foundations, and block us from seeing the truth.
Don’t let that happen to you.
Fortunately, good thoughts multiply, too. Focusing on the Father’s love, on the excellent and praiseworthy, shifts our mindset and keeps us grounded in His love. Grateful thoughts lead to thankful words, which lead to inspired actions. Kinder words and loving acts lead to better relationships and increased opportunities. See how that works? Transformation occurs when we keep our thoughts on God.
God gave you free will, so you get to choose what to plant, what to pull, what to keep and what to remove, what to fertilize and what to starve in the garden of your mind. Your choices will determine whether it’s beautiful and fragrant, or an overwhelmed mess. Choose wisely.
So, what’s the state of your thought life? Let’s write/pray about it.
Prayer journaling is a powerful way to connect with God, focus our prayers, and make sense of our feelings. With today’s post, we’re continuing the Overflowing Jesus Journal prompts, and this is Day 5. If you missed it, start with Day 1, which explains the whole concept.
Overflowing Jesus Journal: Day 5
Let the truth of the verse, below, wash over you.
Philippians 4:8 NIV – Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.
When you’re ready, journal the following as a prayer to God:
- Where are you focusing? Have your thoughts been lingering on the excellent and praiseworthy or somewhere else?
- How will shifting your focus to the pure, lovely, excellent and praiseworthy impact your life?
- Ask God to give you a way to recognize when your thoughts are heading to harmful places and the ability and willpower to redirect them.
- Thank God for three things from the last 24 hours. No repeats from previous entries!
Enjoying your prayer journal experience? Desperate for the other prompts? Here you go!
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Encourage your friends to join you on this healing prayer journal journey! Share the goodness with them and on your social media! You never know who needs encouragement.
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Would you like to (re)invite Jesus into your heart? If so, congratulations! This post is for you.