Toxic Thoughts

22 10 2010

Identify  and Reject Toxic Thoughts

Carefully guard your thoughts because they are the source of true life. Proverbs 4:23

The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds. 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. 2 Corinthians 10:4-5

Yet you know me, O Lord; you see me and test my thoughts about you. Drag them off like sheep to be butchered! Set them apart for the day of slaughter! Jeremiah 12:3

What thoughts do you struggle with: Negative? Fearful? Discontented ? Critical?

Replace Toxic Thoughts with God’s Truth

…the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Finally, brothers, whatever is truenoblerightpurelovelyadmirable — if anything is excellent or praiseworthy think about such things. Philippians 4:7-8

Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is — his good, pleasing and perfect will. Romans 12:2

Know Your True ID: Who You Are in Christ

Long before He laid down earth’s foundations, He had us in mind, had settled on us as the focus of His love, to be made whole and holy by His love. Long, long ago He decided to adopt us into his family through Jesus Christ. (What pleasure He took in planning this!) Ephesians 1:4-5

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What Faith is Not…

18 05 2010

1. Faith is Not a Feeling. Feelings come and go. Sometimes you get the joy of great feelings in Christ, sometime the feelings just aren’t there. Sometimes, we get hung up on wanting certain feelings, but our hope is in Christ and his sure foundation, not the shaky foundation of feelings. Doubt is not the opposite of faith. Unbelief is. The real question is what you do with your doubts. Instead of letting your doubts drive to discouragement, let them drive you to Jesus and the new discoveries He has to deepen your faith.

2. Faith is not a Contract.
Sometimes we make deals with God (maybe not not verbally or intentionally). We think if we pray, serve him, go to church, etc., He will open up doors and make things easy and wonderful for us. We’re often not asking for a lot, just one thing or two really important things that He could do for us. If He would just come through, we think we would be fine. And when it doesn’t happen when and how we want it, we feel let down by God. But God is God and we are not. If the only thing Christ gave us was forgiveness of our sins and eternity with Him, we would have enough to praise Him nonstop, 24-7 the rest of our lives.

3. Faith is Not About Us. We want God to be part of our story, but His plan is so much bigger. He wants us to be part of His story. It may seem like a subtle difference, but it’s huge. He sets the agenda and our job is to surrender all of ourselves to Him.

4. Faith is Trust. Simply put, faith is complete dependence on Christ and what He has done for you. Faith is following Him when you cannot see where He is taking you. Faith is holding on to the fact that Christ is holding on to you.





Faith and Doubt

25 03 2010

Sometimes I think people who have faith are afraid to admit they have doubts. But in Matthew 28:16-17, there is this really weird ending to the gospel story. After the resurrection, right before Jesus sends the disciples into world, it says this…

Then the disciples went to the mountain where Jesus told them to go. When they saw Him, they worshipped Him, but some doubted. Matthew 28: 16-17

Isn’t that crazy? These people listened to Jesus, followed Him, saw him Him crucified, saw Him rise again, but still some had doubts. I find that very encouraging. Often I feel the way Dale Bruner puts it…“The Christian faith is bi-polar. Disciples live their life between worship and doubt, trusting and questioning, hoping and worrying.” Ever been there?

There are a couple of things I find amazingly encouraging in that story of worshipping doubters. First, Matthew in not afraid to include them in his story. He is so authentically honest about their struggles. The second is even more amazing, Jesus includes them in His story. These are the people He uses to impact the world. I love the way John Ortberg says it:

“You go! You doubters, go. You risk your lives for Me. You change your world for Me. And you will find as you go that it is your own doubts that are healed. You doubters are included too.”

This Sunday…Busting Some Faith Myths!