Photography by Matt Wyatt

Thinking about Thinking

When Adam and Eve wandered through the garden they must have felt completely overwhelmed. Can you imagine being the first person to see all of these new things for the first time? Prior to them there was nothing, everything was a new encounter. When you and I go outside and we see a squirrel we are not taken aback or awe struck. Billions of people have lived before us, seen squirrels, petted squirrels, raised squirrels, fed squirrels and we pretty much know all there is to know about them. Yet imagine for a moment Adam and Eve walking along when they suddenly come across a serpent. Had they ever seen one before? When it started talking was it a surprise or did they have no expectations from it?

Well, on that fateful day this serpent did speak. This serpent spoke the first lie this first couple had ever heard. When inquiring about what God told Eve, the serpent asks “Did God really say ‘You must not eat from any tree in the garden?'”  Let the lies begin. The emphasis alone on the word “really” causes Eve to question God. Of course we know that isn’t exactly what God said and Eve acknowledges this error.

The woman said to the serpent, “We may eat fruit from the trees in the garden,  but God did say, ‘You must not eat fruit from the tree that is in the middle of the garden, and you must not touch it, or you will die.’”

So Eve makes it more specific and dodges the first lie from the serpent. Not all plants are off limits, but one specific plant. One for Eve. But not for long.

“You will not certainly die,” the serpent said to the woman. “For God knows that when you eat from it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.”

Eve got more specific and so did Satan.

And so Eve starts to think- Is God holding out on us? Is God being honest with us?

Lying to get us second guessing God is Satan’s oldest trick and he is still doing it today. Just think about all the thoughts you have had even as you read this. Some have been worries, reminders, questions, and some have probably been totally random (like that one you just thought of now) and maybe even one or two them were lies.

Thoughts are a precursor to our actions. Every action you make starts with a thought. A thought turns into a decision and a decision turns into an action. If Satan can form a stronghold in your mind about something he can get you to act the way he wants you to act.

It is so important to really pause and think about what we are thinking about; to judge each thought that passes by and determine whether we should crucify it or glorify it. We cannot allow our minds to be an unchecked dumping ground for Satan to use.

Paul put it this way….

“Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect” Romans 12:12

Think of your mind like a border crossing.

If you go to Detroit and try to cross over into Canada what are you going to have to do?  You’ll have to prove to them your identity, tell them your purpose, your reason for entering and only if you are cleared will you be able to enter. You need to have one of those big bulky scary looking border patrol officers in your mind to test the thoughts trying to make their way in.

How can we test it? By its fruit. If it is not going to bring about the fruit of the spirit when put into action then it is not of God. Or as Joyce Meyer says, if you have stinkin’ thinkin’ your going to have stinkin’ livin’.

We are told exactly what kind of thoughts to think-

Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things. Philippians 4:8.

If the thoughts entering our minds have the opposite fruit of honor, purity, love and excellence we are to crucify them.

When Jesus died on the cross we shared that moment with Him. Every negative thought, every worry, every confusion, doubt, thought of self- hate, fear, all of these things are defeated because of what Jesus did on the cross.In sharing with his resurrection, we have the same power that conquered the grave available to us to conquer the lies Satan puts into our thoughts.

May we be united with Christ, not just physically some day, not just in our hearts and soul but our mind is well. Let us remember the greatest commandment to love God will our hearts, soul and MIND.


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