Where Is Your Head At?
Read Philippians 4:8 (ESV)
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.
What is the value of following Paul’s advice and focusing on “these things?”
I don’t know about you but what I am thinking about has a significant impact on me and the people around me. For example, if I’m thinking about how much I have to do and how little time I have to do it, I am more likely to snap at my kids for interrupting me. If I am hyper-focused on all of the what-if’s, I am likely to feel anxious. If I am focused on everything that I don’t have, I am likely to feel discontent. If I focus on the flaws of the people around me, I am less likely to love and appreciate them.
The same principle applies to sin. In Luke 6:45, Jesus said “The good person out of the good treasure of his heart produces good, and the evil person out of his evil treasure produces evil, for out of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaks.” Basically, what is in our hearts eventually spills over into our actions. So how do we get good into our hearts?
In today’s verse, Paul gives us the answer and it’s really quite simple. If we want good to come out of us, we have to put good things into us. We can positively influence our actions by safeguarding what we put into our hearts and minds.
First, we should immerse ourselves in the truth. Jesus told us in John 17:17 that God’s Word is truth! If we want truth to come out of us, we need to spend more time soaking in the truth of His Word and less time soaking up the lies of this world.
Then, Paul said to think about things that are honorable, just, pure, lovely, commendable, excellent, and praise-worthy. Would you consider the last show you watched to be “pure?” Would the lyrics of the music you listen to be considered “praise-worthy?” Are the images you take in “lovely?” Is the content of the books you read “commendable?” If the answer is no or usually no, are the messages you are surrounding yourself with bringing you peace or anxiety? Do they have the potential to positively impact your spiritual life or negatively impact it? Is what you are taking in appealing to your sin nature or your new nature in Jesus Christ?
Friends, where is your head at? Are you concentrating on commendable things? Are you focusing on His holiness? Are you taking in messages that are true and lovely? How are you storing up good treasure in your heart so that goodness can overflow? We tend to do what we think. So set your minds on “these things” and “these things” will overflow into your life.
Jesus, You are the only One who is truly honorable, just, pure, lovely, commendable, excellent, and praiseworthy. Help me to set my mind on things that glorify You and conform me into Your image. I know that what I put into my head and my heart eventually overflows into my actions. I want my thoughts and my life to glorify You. Amen.