Let heaven fill your thoughts. Do not think only about things down here on earth (Colossians 3:2).
The major strategy the master terrorist, the devil, uses to attack us is in our thought life.
Are you struggling in your thought life? If so, you are not alone. Our minds are a battleground. But there is good news.
For example, Joe was constantly tempted by evil thoughts and desires. He battled to overcome them, but without success.
Finally one day he decided that every time he was tempted, he would pray for a missionary he knew in India. Without realizing it, he had put the devil in a terrible predicament! The more Satan whispered evil thoughts into his mind, the more he prayed for his friend in India. And the more he prayed, the more God blessed the missionary's work.
When the devil puts ungodly thoughts or desires into your mind, how do you respond? Are you able to resist his attacks, or does temptation get the best of you?
Another way to win this battle is whenever an evil thought flashes across your mind, begin to quote aloud God's Word. Your mind has to stop and listen to what your mouth is saying! This is really effective. Another way is simply exercising your will and choosing to think godly thoughts. Paul wrote, "Whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable -- if anything is excellent or praiseworthy -- think about such things" (Philippians 4:8, NIV).
A danger is trying is to camouflage an evil thought life, where we appear one thing on the outside but are really another on the inside. For instance, we spray fresh paint over the rusting metal body of an old car. Homes are carefully decorated to appear serene on the outside, even though a battle rages on the inside. And we spend thousands of dollars on physical exercise, clothing and cosmetics to make ourselves more attractive, though hardly a dime on the areas of our inner life, which no one can see.
But it is not long before problems begin to surface. In time, rust eats through the paint; the neighbors begin to see through the facade of a well-decorated home; and even the most physically fit bodies and brilliant minds eventually disintegrate.
As Christians we must always be aware that a spiritual battle is raging, but Satan cannot touch us if we are abiding in Christ and His Word is abiding in us. The enemy is attacking the inner recesses of our minds, where he thinks no one will notice. We must not harbor and nurse such negative or evil thoughts, and camouflage them, but we must fight the battle daily in the power of the Holy Spirit, and win. One of my favorite disciplines is to read psalms of praise aloud and listen to praise music.
Yours for fulfilling the Great Commission each year until our Lord returns,
The late Dr. Bill Bright was Founder and President/Chairman Emeritus of Campus Crusade for Christ, an organization which began as a campus ministry in 1951 and now has more than 27,000 full-time staff and up to 500,000 trained volunteer staff in 196 countries in areas representing 99.6 percent of the world's population. In the past 50 years, Campus Crusade for Christ has seen approximately 6 billion exposures to the gospel worldwide. The film, "JESUS," which Bright conceived and funded through Campus Crusade for Christ, is the most widely translated and viewed film of any type ever produced. Since its use began in 1980, the film has been translated into 839 languages and viewed or listened to by over 5.7 billion people in 228 countries. Dr. Bright was also the author of more than fifty books. Visit campuscrusade.com for more details
Copyright (c) 2003, Bill Bright. All rights reserved. However, readers may copy and distribute this message as desired, without restrictions in number, as long as the content is not altered. Forwarding this e-mail to friends is encouraged. For many evangelistic and spiritual growth materials, visit the Campus Crusade for Christ Web site at ccci.org. See campuscrusade.com for Bill Bright's own materials.