I believe it was Martin Luther who said, "You cannot stop a bird from flying over your head, but you can keep him from building a nest in your hair."
Over the years as a true believer in Christ: His death for my sins, His burial, and His resurrection; I have come to the realization that thoughts are very much like birds. I cannot always prevent them from entering my mind, but neither do I have to dwell upon them. In First Corinthians 2:16, Paul tells the Corinthians that we have received the mind of Christ. Thus we see things as God sees them. Taking the Sword of the Spirit, which is the Word of God, we have a marvellous tool with which to defend ourselves against Satan's evil thoughts as well as those which arise from our old sinful nature. All of this is enabled by the indwelling Holy Spirit who was given to us when we trusted in Christ. When I understood these truths, and made them apart of my thinking, my life was changed for ever. Even though bad thoughts may still come to my mind, yet because I have a choice based on what Christ has done for me, they are not allowed to build a nest there. Choosing to think on the things of God as found in His Word, what a difference it has made--and all because of what He has done for me. Perhaps the following remarks will be of help. Again, I would ask you ...
WHAT DO YOU THINK?
You've probably heard the old axiom "You are what you eat." Might it also be said, "You are what you think."? Most certainly for the Christian who would "grow up" into Christ, the "thought life" is of the utmost importance.
In Colossians 3:2 we are instructed to set our mind on the things above. And in Romans 8:6-8 we read that "the mind set on the flesh is death, but the mind set on the Spirit is life and peace, because the mind set on the flesh is hostile toward God; for it does not subject itself to the law of God,... and those who are in the flesh cannot please God." So then, where do we direct our thinking in order to mind the things of the Spirit and to please God?
Romans 6:11 is a good place to start! "Even so consider yourselves to be dead to sin, but alive to God in Christ Jesus." Is your mindset such that you are constantly counting upon the fact that you are dead to (separated from) the sinful nature and now have a living relationship with respect to the Father in Christ Jesus? Grabbing hold of this thought can revolutionize your spiritual life. The choice is yours.
There are many other such truths in the Word of God on which the believer can reflect or meditate. Peter encourages us in 1 Peter 2:2 "like newborn babes, long for the pure milk of the word, that by it you may grow in respect to salvation," and "grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ" 2 Peter 3:18; and Paul in Philippians 4:8-9 "brethren, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good repute, if there is any excellence and if anything worthy of praise, let your mind dwell on these things. The things you have learned and received and heard and seen in me, practice these things; and the God of peace shall be with you." And dare we forget the message of the 119th Psalm?
The author of Hebrews in 4:12-13 tells us how absolutely important God's Word is. "For the word of God is living and active and sharper than any two-edged sword, and piercing as far as the division of soul and spirit, of both joints and marrow, and able to judge the thoughts and intentions of the heart. And there is no creature hidden from His sight, but all things are open and laid bear to the eyes of Him whom for us, face-to-face, is the Word."
So tell me, WHAT DO YOU THINK?