Posted by: mikenicholsblog | February 8, 2016

between the ears

Recently, I have been in conversations which I know were effected by negative inner emotions. Years ago in another century (doesn’t that make me sound old), I heard a statistic that, although dated, is probably still accurate. The statistic was, seventy percent of all communication is self-talk, and seventy-seven percent of self-talk is negative. Wow! Think about the ramifications of that statistic. If that is even close to true, then all of us have a major battle that ensues daily… between our ears. I believe it to be a fairly safe assumption on my part that you (like me) are often pre-occupied internally and, therefore, distracted externally. Those negative inner conversations inevitably play a role in our confidence, effectiveness and joy.

Have you ever been invaded by thoughts like:

  • I’ll never get to retire.
  • He’ll never change.
  • I’m a failure.
  • My child is hopeless.
  • Why would God let this happen?

Those are just a few of the mind benders that cloud our daily outlook. These thoughts are made more difficult to bear when it seems that all that surrounds us is negative. And make no mistake about it, there is a lot that goes on around us that is less than positive! So our question must be, how can we reduce our ill-advised self-talk, and respond positively in a world which tends to wear us out? Scripture tells us, “For as he thinks in his heart, so is he.” (Proverbs 23:7) Today, you and I are living realities of what we are thinking.

In her excellent book, Power Thoughts, Joyce Meyer gives us great counsel.

Indeed, very few people realize that we have the ability to choose our thoughts and decide what we want to think; most of us passively meditate on whatever comes into our minds without ever realizing our enemy, Satan, uses our minds extensively to control us and keep us from fulfilling God’s destiny for our lives. Each person regenerated through receiving Jesus Christ as their Savior receives a new spirit and a new heart from God, but does not receive a new mind—the mind must be renewed. The intent of one’s heart may be pure and yet the mind still confused. The Bible declares emphatically that we must be transformed by the entire renewal of mind and attitude (see Romans 12:2). This is accomplished by a complete, diligent and thorough study of God’s Word.

If you are a Christ-follower, can you trust that God will always and forever do what is best in your life? Can you accept that His love is perfect?  That He will always respond to you out of that love? I believe you would answer “Yes” to those questions, yet we still battle with the seventy-seven percent negative self-talk. There are many ways I could encourage you in the battle, but let me just challenge you with one thought. It seems to me that we have a strong, but misplaced desire to trust our Father. Our emphasis is pre-occupied with ourselves and managing trust without experiencing it. You and I can say we are trusting the Father, but releasing our control and depending on Him to respond in love – now that is real trust. The question is will we release control?

When you and I release control and experience the joy of trusting Him, our thoughts can move from self doubt to real life-changing faith. Could our seventy-seven percent negative self- talk turn positive? Could our inner conversations sound like this?

  • Life is hard, but He will lead me to retirement.
  • I feel like a failure sometimes, but God will still guide me.
  • My child is wandering, but my Lord is seeking Him.
  • I don’t know why this happened, but I trust my Father.

Look at everything through the lens of His love, stop being pre-occupied with all that could be wrong, and simply trust the One who will always and forever do the best for you. Rid yourself of the seventy-seven percent. Would you stop right now, and confess the negative inner conversations, and release your issues to the Father? You can trust Him!

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