Society today moves at the speed of thought. We can put a thought into action almost as fast as we can think it. With modern technology the way it is I can dream up a business idea, register the corporation, possess all related domain names and social networking services, and have a presence in place in about an hour. The length of time between thought and action has decreased dramatically. As Christians we must control our actions, just because we can think of something doesn’t mean we should do it. Some things we shouldn’t think at all… So how are we to keep our thoughts under control?
Keeping our thoughts under control is very important. It is when we let them run wild that various thoughts and ideas enter our heads that really shouldn’t. This quote from Tryon Edwards (1809–1894) shows how important it is for us to keep our thoughts under control:
Thoughts lead on to purposes; purposes go forth in action;
actions form habits; habits decide character;
and character fixes our destiny.
What we think has a high impact on our destiny and as Christians we should only focus on one destiny, eternity hangs in the balance. So what are we to do? Scripture teaches us three things that we can do that will help us to keep our thoughts under control:
- Focus our thoughts properly.
- Think intentionally.
- Give Jesus Control.
In Colossians Paul teaches us the we are to focus our thinking on things above, on heavenly things and not earthly things.
Therefore, if you have been raised with Christ, keep seeking the things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Keep thinking about things above, not things on the earth, for you have died and your life is hidden with Christ in God. When Christ (who is your life) appears, then you too will be revealed in glory with him. (Col 3:1-4 NET)
In Philippians Paul teaches us that we are to intentionally focus our thinking into thematic areas that are good.
Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is worthy of respect, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if something is excellent or praiseworthy, think about these things. (Phi 4:8 NET)
In 2 Corinthians Paul teaches that we are to give control to Jesus so that we may keep our thoughts under control and keep them properly Christ centered.
For though we live as human beings, we do not wage war according to human standards, for the weapons of our warfare are not human weapons, but are made powerful by God for tearing down strongholds. We tear down arguments and every arrogant obstacle that is raised up against the knowledge of God, and we take every thought captive to make it obey Christ. (2Co 10:3-5 NET)
Our thoughts are probably the largest battleground for Satan, through them he can work on our temptations, desires, and actions so it is very important for us to keep them under control!! Keeping our thoughts under control is very difficult, they move so very fast, but through the grace of Christ we can control them if we focus, think intentionally, and give it over to God!