I have probably said this before on this blog: We were created to become the image of something. Watch a child mimic his or her parents. It’s what we do.
When we are young innocent babes, we are a blank slate, we neither know who we are nor what we are supposed to do in this thing called life. If our parents are not saved people, they don’t know who they are either! They are floundering in this world. We become what we see. I remember not wanting to be like my mother, but I was doing the exact same things she did even though she didn’t raise me. Parenthood is spiritual. Children are given spiritual assignments, depending on what the parent has allowed into the child’s life. So parents impart a spiritual life to their babies, whether for good or bad, whether they know it or not. “Train up a child in the way he should go. And when he is old he will not depart from it.” Proverbs 22:6
Iniquities, sins, and wrong ways of thinking are spiritually visited on subsequent generations. Exodus 20:5 “Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them: for I the LORD thy God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate me;” I didn’t say it; God did.
So we are what we think we are. Does that sound about right? Many times, we are what our parents said we are. We act on what we believe. We usually don’t act on things we don’t believe, correct? So we are following what we ourselves believe, as a rule.
The bible says, as a man thinks in his heart, so is he. Proverbs 23:7 So our thinking and our acting are very much intertwined. Coming to Jesus causes a change to begin in our hearts which affects our thinking. We start to acknowledge we NEED God. Thats where all change begins.
So if the way you think makes you an unhappy person, what is the answer? I”m amazed at how long people can live being unhappy, which means their thoughts are unhappy. More than likely, their own self image is unhappy.
Perhaps I have a very low threshold for pain; I was fairly young when I decided I must be doing something wrong. My life was not going the way I wanted it to. I decided there must be another way. I began to surrender to God then, realizing I didn’t have good answers or any answers at all on my own. What I was doing (sin) was not working for me. I began searching, looking for help. And that is where God met with me.
Man is God’s crowning creation. He has been uniquely given the power and authority rule over the earth and creation, even independently from God the Creator. Man is supposed to be ruling the earth for good. Of all of God’s creation, man is the only one with this ability, the ability to reason. Animals are instinctual, without the ability to reason. But man apart from God becomes beast-like, only making decisions based on his own selfish desires and not on logical reason. Isn’t that what we are seeing today in our society? Especially now during this time of Covid. It seems all logic and reasoning have been thrown out the window, even in the world of medicine.
What continues to amaze me is how long humans are able to persist in their wrong thinking, even when it makes them miserable and produces bad results. They will continue to do the same things over and over, even though they do not prosper in it. They are not happy, but they continue in it, day after day as if there is no other way. Why do we hold on to it?
I heard a teaching once about how the brain has pathways in it that are there from continued use, just like a worn path through the woods. And when the brain is confronted with a choice, it will always go toward the old pathway that it has always chosen. We might term it the default position. It takes effort for the brain (and the person) to create new pathways that will become the ones it relies on in the future, but the bible says we are to not be “conformed to the world, but to be renewed in the spirit of our minds.” Romans 12:2
We now have access to the mind of God, to think like He thinks! Thoughts of faith and hope and love. But we have to make the choice to do that. We must choose to reject the old ways of thinking and embrace the new. 1 Corinthians 2. We must renew our minds by praying and mediating on the thoughts of God. And His thoughts are in His word, so that is where we must go if we are to learn new ways of thinking and thereby create new pathways in our brains, a new default position, so to speak.
God says in 2 Timothy 1:7 that He “has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power love and a sound mind.” If we accept that as true (and we should), we have to embrace that promise as our own, agree with it, and determine to lay hold of it for ourselves. That is how we obtain every promise God says in His word.
If we can truly change those old pathways in our brain (and we can), there is a whole new perspective awaiting us, one full of joy and peace, no matter what is happening around us. With joy and peace operating in our hearts and minds, instead of fear, we can make right decisions, right choices. We have the right perspective. Heaven has come and taken a place in our lives!