It’s Time to Refocus…

IMG_1355In order for your life to change you will need faith, but you will also need to refocus your thoughts. We need to continually rethink the way that we think. We need to possibly change our mind and the way we see things about a number of issues.

Proverbs 4:23 “Be careful how you think. Your life is shaped by your thoughts.” The way you think, determines the way you feel. And the way you feel determines the way you act. If you want to change your actions, you begin by changing the way you think.

So when we change the way we think it will inevitably change the way we act. If you are acting in a depressed, discouraged way it’s because you’re thinking depressed, discouraged thoughts. That’s your choice. You don’t have to think those thoughts. If you’re acting in fearful, worried ways it’s because you’re thinking fearful, worried thoughts.

Don’t ever try to just change your feelings, because you can’t force a feeling to change. It’s like saying, “I’m going to force myself to feel loving toward you!” You can’t do it. It’s like you spank your child and then say, “Now, I want you to be happy.” You can’t force a feeling. You have to go in the back door by changing your actions and your thoughts and then that changes your feelings.

The Bible says, “Be transformed by the renewing of your mind.”

There are things that we regret that have happened in our life. There are things no doubt we are ashamed of. There are mistakes, failures, bad, dumb decisions. But every time you think them over and over again, you’re just reinforcing them in your mind. Your past is past! It’s over, done. The past cannot hurt you any more unless you choose to let it hurt you by holding on to the memory of it. The more you hold on to that memory, the more you rehearse it, it continues to hurt you today and that’s dumb. It cannot hurt you without your permission. You have to change your mind and let go and get rid of those painful, hurtful memories of shame and guilt and other things.

How do you do that?

First, confession. You say, “I’ve confessed to God but I still feel guilty. How do I get rid of a painful memory?” Not by resisting it but by replacing it. Not saying, “I’m not going to think about it! I’m not going to think about it!” What are you doing the whole time? Thinking about it. Stop focusing on what you don’t want and start focusing on what you do want. I heard a racecar driver say, “Never focus on what you are trying to avoid.” If you focus on the wall or others cars you’re sure to hit them. You get drawn or pulled into what you focus on. Get your attention onto something else. Refocus. Replace those memories by, every time they come up, start thinking about something else. Focus on something else.

What’s the best thing to focus on? God’s word. The truth. Psalm 1 “Happy are those who are always meditating on God’s word. They’re like trees along a river that do not dry up. They succeed in everything they do.”

There are at least two things that most people want in life. We all want to be happy and we all want to succeed. The antidote, the answer, the way we get those is the phrase right in the middle — “… meditating on God’s word.” That’s the answer to the other two. The more you meditate on God’s word, the more happy and successful you’ll be. It’s a promise from God.

What does it mean to meditate? Meditation is so important, meditation on God’s word is such an important part of our faith (Joshua 1:8).

Meditation is nothing mystical or scary or super spiritual. If you look up the word meditate in a dictionary, it simply means “to focus, to concentrate, to think about something over and over in your mind.” You do it all the time. Do you know how to worry? If you know how to worry, you’re already a pro at meditating. That’s what you’re doing. When you take a fear or a negative idea and think on it over and over in your mind, we call that worry. When we take a verse from the Bible and think on it over and over, we call that meditating.

As you fill your mind with God’s word, it begins to change your mind. You begin to stop seeing yourself as other people see you or as you have seen yourself and begin to see yourself as God does. That’s where the change takes place.

One of my favorite verses in the Bible is Jonah 3:1. You know the story of Jonah. God told Jonah to go one direction and do something. He decided he’d do the exact opposite of what God wanted for his life. So God had to take him on a little Mediterranean cruise. After that cruse was over in Jonah 3:1 it says “And the word of the Lord came unto Jonah a second time.” I’m so glad for that verse. Aren’t you glad we serve the God of the second chance? And of the third, the fourth, the fifth and the tenth, and the 25th and the 100th. He is the God of grace who says, “Come to Me with your brokenness, come to Me with your failures, come to Me with your shame, come to Me with your guilt, come to Me with the messed up things you’re done in your life and I can turn them around. Because I love you and I made you for a purpose. That purpose has never, ever changed. But you will never benefit from or enjoy my love or your purpose until you refocus and see things from my perspective.”

About Ron

Ron and Anne founded the first Christian Fellowship Church in Harlingen, Texas in 1982. Ron presently serves as its apostolic overseer. He travels nationally and internationally motivating and challenging people to be effective in their call and ministry to their local church, their community, and the marketplace.

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  1. sandra hunt says:

    This is just the word I needed. Thank you

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